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Os amigos do balacobaco ( Best Friends Forever )

A book to help you talking to the kids about a loved one's death

“Ana, Sofia and Paco are best friends forever (os amigos do balacobaco)! They have always been together… till the day they found out that Ana’s heart had stopped beating.”

This is the story of  “Os amigos do balacobaco” (Best friends Forever), a short beautiful book  writen by Silvia Camossa and illustrated by Ana Terra that can help families to talk about death with their children when needed.

The author gave me the book when we presented the results of the first phase of  the project  ‘Let’s talk about grieving?’ (‘Vamos falar sobre o luto?’) in an event in São Paulo. I knew Silvia was a good writer  and also that she had a different sensitivity for life. So when I got the book I was sure that I would also learn from it and not only the children.

As soon as I got the book I started reading it with my kids and found out how Silvia would address the subject – and I wasn’t wrong to imagine that it would be so sweet and sensitive. My daughter Gabriela (9 years old) ended the book  saying it was so beautiful! She took it from my hands and started flicking through it again, looking for the most touching parts of the story.

Because I am part of this project, the subject grieving is being addressed at home more naturally… and it was also very spontaneously that my youngest son,  Fernando, with 4 years old , asked me: “did she die mommy?” And without giving me time to answer, Gabriela quickly explained to her brother that their friend had become a little star, but that in their hearts nothing had changed  because they would love her forever! the conversation went on for more minutes and the three of us reviwed different messages in the book.

“I hope this story  is a sensitive and poetic tool that leads to a carefull interaction with children about death, filled with love and overcoming” says the author in her website. I closed the book feeling thankfull to Silvia for providing me with such a deep and rich moment with my children and also for ahving the chance to talk to them about this subject.

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