Here are excerpts from some of the many heartwarming messages I have received from people far and wide after they’ve watched Rebirth. After reading what an impact sharing my sacred journey through the film has made, I realized I could continue to do more to directly serve the widowed community and others who are coping with loss or life crises, as well as continue to bring a personal connection to September 11th and Sergio’s life story. Each message has been a catalyst for launching me into the speaker’s arena, and I am forever grateful for every message which has inspired me to fulfill my soul’s calling for this stage of my life. My deepest gratitude goes out to all of you who took the time to see the film, and for all who have reached out to me with your words of comfort, support, and shared grief…from the bottom of my heart, thank you.
“Tanya, I am a teacher in Columbus, Ohio, and I spent my day today sharing the tragedy of what happened eleven years ago today. As part of our day, I showed them the documentary Rebirth. I know how hard the loss of your fiance was, and I just wanted to take a moment to tell you how moved my students were by your story. Many of them come to the United States as refugees from war-torn countries and have experienced tremendous amounts of violence in their lives and have great difficulty expressing their feelings in a healthy way. They connected hard with your honesty and, as a result, many, many students shed tears. The conversation generated incredible discussion. Nothing I have done in my twenty plus years of teaching has ever created such an outpouring of emotion. Thank you for turning your tragic loss of Sergio into such a force for good in this world. Today, you truly were the difference. Wishes for much happiness.” – H.
“Watching your story on Rebirth, I completely relate. You’re my voice in this path of grief. I just wanted to say thank you for participating in this documentary. I’m going to recommend this to friends/family so they can understand what I feel and the struggle of coping & moving forward in life. You have given me hope that perhaps sometime in the future, I can find love and happiness again, I’m almost 2 years out and many times, feel so broken and hopeless.” – E.
“I just had to tell you that you are such an inspiration, Tanya. I suffered a loss and clung to Rebirth for hope. I think I watched it about 50 times.. that someone as sad as you were in 2001 was capable of healing to the point where you could function again. A dear friend of mine just lost his fiance a few months ago and he too is clinging to the hope that spreads across 10 years in this documentary. Thank you so much for your participation and strength. Tread on. Your strength is a true inspiration. Forever remembering Sergio and all the dear departed and sending positive, happy vibes to your family.” -K.
“I just want to say that I watched Rebirth this evening and was moved enough to reach out to you with love and hugs for all you have suffered. Everyone’s story was so emotional and moving but there was something about yours that was so raw, so moving, so honest, so filled with love and loss that I felt I had to write to you to let you know how much your sharing moved me. I too have suffered great loss in my life, my father and three brothers in the last few years, and it is so helpful in the healing process to hear the stories of others who have suffered greatly yet have found the courage to move on…” –M.
“I have caught “Rebirth” in two viewings on TV recently, and I really wanted to tell you how moved I was by all the participants, but your sharing about your life in particular, and how eloquently and openly you expressed your thoughts and feelings in dealing with grief, pain, joy and starting over. I am going through a particularly painful period of my life right now, and it really gives me hope to see how someone can survive such pain and be transformed. Blessings to you and all of your loved ones, especially your husband and children.” –N.
“Tanya, your story hit me like a ton of bricks. Talk about a frog in my throat. I’m recently engaged and all I could think about was my fiancé being in your position. You truly are a strong woman for going through this, moving on with your life while not relenting any devotion to your past, and continuing to help others and keep a strong relationship with Sergio’s family. God bless you. I know he’s looking down on you fondly. I know I would if I was in his shoes…”– M.
“I thank you so much for sharing your experience of rising like a phoenix from the ashes of tradgedy. After seeing your story, I will redouble my efforts to have appreciation for every moment that I can share with my loved ones, and my soulmate in particular. It is so easy to find fault and disenchantment in the ones we love. You showed me the import of making every encounter with loved ones postive and worthy of golden memory status…Thank you for having the courage to share and for impacting my life in such a positive way.” -D.
“i saw the documentary rebirth and i must say i was an emotional wreck!!! Your experience is so insipirational!!! You have come such a long way in grieving Sergio’s death and finding happiness again. My husband is a firefighter here in Maryland and til i watched rebirth i never realized how much more i should appreciate my husband for risking his life to save others. After i watched the film i went up to my husband and gave him the biggest hug ever and let him know how much i love him because we never know what tomorrow may bring…” –E.
“You have taught me many lessons and I wish to thank you for transcending grief by showing others the path through it.”-K.
“Tanya I just watched “Rebirth” and you are truly an inspiration. Though I’ve never suffered a loss such as yourself I have experienced my own pain. You give me hope that recovery is possible. I admire your spirit and you as a person. Thank you for sharing your story…”- K
” Just want to say hi and tell you that I went to the 9/11 Memorial last Saturday morning. It was a beautiful day,not a cloud in the sky. Just like it was that day. I am happy to say that Sergio’s name was the first name that I saw. It was also the first name that I wanted to see. Needless to say, the tears started flowing and continued through out my visit. I made sure to see every name I could without disturbing other families and visitors. I went to see REBIRTH at the Count Basie Theater in Red Bank and was so touched by the stories. You all did a wonderful job telling us about your loved ones. You made them all our loved ones. You are all so special and have made such a difference in so many lives.”- M.
“I just saw Rebirth for the first time & I was truly touched by your story. It was a rare & beautiful thing to watch someone love another so deeply. Your journey was heartwrenching yet comforting at the same time. So few truly understand the grief one goes through when one truly loves & then loses that person. Thank you for sharing your story. It will bring comfort to many people going through similar situations. While watching Rebirth it took me right back to 9/11. This film will keep the victims memories alive. It was a brave and wonderful thing that all of you did. Thank you for letting me watch your journey. I’m so glad you found your happy ending!”- J
“I happened upon Rebirth, and I fell in love with your story. I’ve watched it at least 4 times now…I felt a connection with your grief… I want you to know that in watching you talk about your grief, for the first time, I didn’t feel so alone… Thank you for being brave enough to be honest….to put your story out there….I especially love the part where you talk about getting announcements in the mail (friends getting married, having babies…)….it sucks! You’re happy for the people you love and care about, but at the same time, you ache for the life you saw for yourself… I just wanted to connect with you and let you know that with every tear you shed in that documentary, I shed a tear with you. While I understand that your grief is most likely very private at this point in your life, I want you to know that there are some like you out there, some like me….hurting quietly yet feeling hopeful. I’m so grateful I saw that documentary and learned your story. Thank you so much.”- M.
“I just want to tell you that I have watched rebirth a few times now and I feel such a connection to you and your love story with Sergio. You see I lost my husband of 22yrs to cancer almost 3yrs ago and I’am so lost and heartbroken I feel like I don’t know where I belong in this world without him. I thank god everyday for our boy’s because they are what have kept me going. So when I watch you and the strength and courage you had to make the decision to live and to then find love again you give me hope and for that I truly thank you…” –R.
“I just wanted to take this time to thank you deeply for everything you’ve done.. specially for sharing your story with all of us. Though I have never met you I feel like I know you so well. I want to start out by saying that when i first watched REBIRTH I felt such a deep connection to you. When you cried I cried, and when you spoke of the happiness you had in your life I smiled for you. You are an angel and I thank the Lord for giving you strength and courage to continue with your life. I admire how you never have and never will forget Sergio and those who were taken away from their loved ones so cruelly.”– L.
“Ur story was able to capture perfectly all of the stages of grief but most importantly that there is still a life to be lived after such great tragedy. The way u have been able to channel the grief u had n turn it into work where now u are able to help others in their journey is inspiring…I’m sure many ppl learned how to appreciate those they have in their lives watching your story because you can see how short life can be n how those moments we take for granted could be gone forever. Thank you for being as courageous as u have been in sharing your story n for the work you do for the widowed community currently. I’m sure your girls will be extremely proud one day knowing their mommy helped so many others throughout her life. This is your full circle all that u endured ultimately served a greater purpose than u could have ever imagined. This is simply the beginning for you. I wish u, ray, and your girls the best. I’m sure that Sergio is more than proud his girl never gave up n in her own way has impacted n changed lives just as he did.” –M.