Reviewed by Jeffrey Brooke-Stewart www.readersfavorite.com Living Through the Pain - The Lonely Me is a harrowing story. Losing her mother, father, brother and sister-in-law in an aircraft accident was just the start for 16-year-old Cathy Kurtz. The fact that she should have been on the aircraft and the subsequent 'why not me' mental challenge compounded the problem. But there was more going on in this young life. An indiscretion with a boyfriend just prior to the accident resulted in an unplanned and unwanted sexual encounter. And this added to the guilt. Cathy became convinced that God was punishing her for that episode by causing the death of her parents. Over the years, an unstable surviving brother and a manipulative husband simply added to an incredible story of difficulties. At times the story makes for hard reading as the reader shares the emotional struggles. In Living Through the Pain - the Lonely Me, Cathy Kurtz takes the reader through a story of redemption. Without betraying the details of the story, it suffices to say that a strong faith in God is revealed. Far from punishing Cathy, God is seen to be helping her cope with the series of tragedies;Helping her even when she is unaware of His support and love. A review of this book would not be complete without a quotation. This one reveals the author's faith, determination, and the desire to help others: "We never know what tomorrow will bring. One day you might find yourself as a lonely figure kneeling in the dark with tears streaming down your face. What I know is that you are not alone. God is right there." Amen to that! A recommended read.
Teresa O’Hanlon, Placer Herald Correspondent Cathy Kurtz is a pleasure to interview. She provides liberating stories from her own life to calm, motivate, and inspire audiences in search of hope and healing. It is clear her goal is to help others outlive their deepest emotional suffering by sharing an unthinkable evolvement she has not only survived, but also thrived in.
Janeane Bernstein, Host/Producer, “Get The FUNK Out Show,” KUCI 88.9 FM “It was a pleasure having Cathy on my show! Her strength, courage, and insight helps people realize that they are not alone facing depression and life’s challenges. We can’t change our journey, but we need to share our journeys, no matter what the story. Sharing is power and Cathy’s story gives strength to so many to do just that. Her mission is to provide strength and courage, to embrace our pasts and be proud of who we are, and help one another.
[The Big Brass Band by Pan Bonsper on Storytots.com]
An Honest Memoir, Author Pam Bonsper
Reading "Living Through the Pain" is truly living through the pain. An honest memoir, this book documents the long-lasting effects of childhood trauma. The pain seems to go on forever. Which is totally understandable since the trauma happened when the author was only sixteen. As a trained therapist, I understand the reasons for childhood guilt and shame and the difficulties of seeing it for what it is. It has taken the author years of counseling and introspection and faith to understand she was guilty of absolutely nothing. I believe this book is part of the process of continuing to rebuild trust in herself and others. I applaud the author for her courage in writing, what must have been at times, very difficult. I believe her desire to help others is well-founded, although faiths other than Christian, are not expressed. The reader will be advised that this is the author's Christian testimonial, and I don't mean that in a negative sense. She has nothing to be apologetic about. It is her experience and her story.
“Cathy’s story is a beautiful testament to the strength of the human spirit. Her journey of indescribable pain and loneliness starts when she was only 16 years old. Following a horrific plane crash killing her loving family, Cathy takes you behind closed doors and gives a brutally honest account of abuse, abandonment and personal failures. Through it all, Cathy grows in strength, love, forgiveness and her faith in God. Her memoir is riveting and inspirational.”
Y. Serres, Quebec, Canada “I have to thank God for giving the strength to Cathy to write this book, because we would have missed a really inspiring story. When you think that the worst has happened in your life and you realize that Destiny has chosen that it can even get worse … I don’t know how it feels but Cathy got all my admiration. We got to live the moment, appreciate every little things of life because we never know when it’s gonna be taken from us or when it’s gonna be our turn to go find God upstairs. Thanks Cathy for the giveaway (GoodReads.com) and for opening yourself up to us like this. I really appreciated the signature and the blessings. Happy life and God bless.
“I started reading your book last night and finished it at 2 in the morning. I could not believe what you went through. …This will surely help others that are going through tough situations, letting them know with GOD, he is our rock and foundation, who loves us unconditionally no matter what. …I am so glad God pulled you through all of this and you are using your story for the Glory of God….I bought extra books to give away to family and friends.”
“My daughter and I felt inspired as Cathy spoke of the ordeal she experienced at age 16. God bless you Cathy for sharing and giving others the courage to overcome such pain and to know that God is always with each of us. Please continue your motivational speaking!”
“I see your book as VERY helpful to others! I'm recommending my friend who is going through a divorce read it to give her hope and inspiration. And, I keep thinking, "Gotta get to the end, gotta get to where she completely finds her happiness and joy." At times, I want to reach out to you and tell you how truly sorry I am that you endured all of this pain. And other times, I want to celebrate the person you have become! Cathy, you are an amazing woman! Such a testament to the human desire to survive and thrive. You story will help people of all walks of life, especially Christian readers.”
Christine C “After reading your book, I can say I was blown away by what a powerful & tragic story this author tells. My jaw hung open for the entire page-turner book. The story is more shocking than one can possibly imagine. The amount of evil Cathy encountered in her life should have totally destroyed her, but she is actually a happy, successful, well-adjusted woman. You can only chalk that up to her relationship with God. ..Not only was the book fascinating, but it helped me understand why I made some of the mistakes in my life that Cathy did in holding on to multiple bad relationships. This book is an excellent read.”
AT “Your book signing was my very 1st & I thoroughly enjoyed very bit. I really enjoyed the way your read the 1st part of your story, it was very touching & I could feel your pain as you read it. I’m so very glad that you allowed Jesus Christ to heal you so much that you are able to share your experience with other women, men, and young men for that fact. I believe your story will help pave a path to Jesus Christ for someone hurting. I’m so honored to have met her.”
Chris B “Powerful!! When you think the human spirit cannot possibly endure anymore pain, tragedy, and loneliness...Cathy will encourage both young girls and woman alike, ‘That with God's faithful strength and love we can get through and survive anything while living through the pain." She is a ‘hero’ in my eyes.”
Linda N “… I appreciated the fact that you included in your book, seeing a psychiatrist to help you address some of your issues. As Christians, we sometimes shy away from the very real help that we can receive from doctors. I believe doctors & medicine are blessing from God. You are definitely an example of God’s goodness and grace. He gave you the strength to endure & overcome situations that would have taken many people (even Christians) out. So praise God for your courage & ability to share your story/testimony!
Pat G “ … truly enjoyed the book launch. ..It turned out to be a great time of fellowship with all those supporting you & celebrating your new book….” “In all honesty, I found the book very sad to read. It is hurtful to see people so cruel, but they were. Uncaring relatives, selfish brother, unstable co-workers. .. Only those who want to live for & please Christ are more likely to be loving & caring. I met those at your book launch, a supportive husband & friends who love you & care for you & prayed for you.”
L Wilson “My first thought was WOW!! What a journey for someone so young. I could feel your pain, I actually could. The book is very well written with just enough detail to get the picture without getting in too deep. Rev. Billy Graham said, "God has given us two hands - one to receive with and the other to give with. We are not cisterns made for hoarding; we are channels made for sharing." Your book shares your inspiration of “living through the pain.” P.S. “You've come a long way Baby!!”
Bill P “I finished reading your book this past weekend. My heart goes out to you. I never realized what stressful & sad experiences you went through. God must have been with you, or you wouldn’t have survived. Your book showed that terrible experiences can be survived, and awful obstacles can be overcome with God’s help.”
Felicia B “Cathy is a phenomenal speaker. Her life story is both gripping & inspirational. I admire her commitment to empowering women. … Cathy has so much to be proud of.”
KM “Wow!!! I couldn’t stop reading. You're like someone who had to climb a big mountain with many tough paths along the way. Now that you are at the top of the mountain, you can look down and help others along the way. You have inspired me. Thank you for writing your story.”
Kathleen S “The book launch was awesome & inspiring. I can’t wait to read your memoir. … You have been through so much yet seem to always be able to smile & help others. Thank you for that & for being you!”
GR “… You have a big heart and God is using you to touch lives.”
KZ “… Your book is heart-wrenching & nothing short of a miracle that you ‘turned out’ as good as you did, with all things considered. I do honestly hope your writing your story has & will continue to bring you peace.”