In this inspiring and soul-searching collection of essays, the award-winning radio host, psychologist, and blogger Daniel Gottlieb shares the delights of grandparenting. In Letters to Sam, he pondered love, loss, and the gift of life with his grandson. The two have something in common beside their blood connection. They are both different: Sam has autism and Gottlieb is a quadriplegic. The author sees his grandson as a spiritual teacher and in this book, he reflects upon what he has learned from him.
The first essay is about a painful slight Sam received from his mother. He was shocked by the injustice of it but decided to heal on his own. And when he felt right, Sam forgave his mother as much as he could "just a little." And the last essay deals with the subject of death and all of the deep questions that come with it.
The rest of the book delineates other teachings from Sam, the art of letting go of what is familiar, the sense that we are all in this together, the ability to read the thoughts and emotions of others, the sadness when everything goes too fast inside one's head, the understanding that one must toughen up in the face of adversity, the simple joys of a tender heart, the danger and often disappointment of expectations, and the fact that "being nice" in a world of competition and conflict is hard. Gottlieb is a sensitive writer who takes the time to muse upon the emotions and ethical themes of our everyday lives in a manner that is winning and spiritually edifying.