Leslie Hunt Palumbo

Leslie Hunt Palumbo is a Grief Counselor, Coach, Speaker, and Author, guiding people who have lost loved ones toward joy again by changing the conversation around grief to include the inspiration and empowerment to live lives their loved ones would be proud of. Her speaking and writing focuses on the Wisdom of Grief and the unexpected gifts and insight that come with this universal human experience.

On a sublime Indian summer morning, my mother walked herself out to one of the most breathtaking spots on this earth, sat herself down, and did the unthinkable- she took her own life. That was the day the sky opened up and took what I thought I knew of life and grief with it.

I was changed. Walking through those first days I felt awestruck. I was writing everything down- I could not stop- I was stunned by the extent of my anguish and even the physical pain I felt from the grief, but I was even more shocked by the beauty that I saw all around me in the midst of it. How could both exist in a moment?
In my intense sorrow, I felt an urgent imperative to grab the joy as it passed by and hold onto it.

Grief became my teacher and my friend. I tried to listen to what loss was trying to teach me. I had not realized that while loss took so much, grief could offer so many gifts. It seemed to be directing me to acknowledge sadness, feel it in my bones, and then get up and ground myself in the beautiful again. My grief became a sacred study that transformed me. The result of that study is this book.

I wrote this book with the hope that it could offer solace, hope, and guidance for anyone who has experienced the intensity and disorientation of great loss. I hope that it offers a lifeline for anyone who feels lost in the waters of grief. Most importantly, I hope that it helps people to experience the deep connection between sorrow and joy, and how along with the sadness, grief ultimately connects us with the poignancy of love in a deeper, more profound way.

Leslie Hunt Palumbo, LCSW is a psychotherapist, grief counselor, author, & speaker with over 25 years of clinical experience helping people move through loss feeling restored and expanded. Her extensive work in grief, which has earned her the nickname “The Angel of Grief”, encompasses individual & group clinical work; guidance for families through the hospice experience; presenting grief teachings & workshops worldwide; and consulting with the Chicago Public Schools, Yale’s Smilow Cancer Hospital, Connecticut Hospice and other professional organizations. Leslie studied at Boston University, Yale University and Loyola University School of Social Work. She completed the intensive Presence Training for Professionals with Eckhart Tolle and studied in extended meditation retreat with Pema Chodron, and always brings a deep presence into her work around loss.