Picking up the Pieces

picking up the pieces book cover

On January 26, 2019, just weeks after celebrating the birth of their first grandchild,  Dawn Ruggie received the call that no parent should ever get. Her beautiful daughter, Brielle, was very ill and in the emergency room.

Brielle, a vibrant 21 year old, who had recently given birth to a baby girl was on the verge of realizing all of her dreams.  From the time the Ruggie’s fostered and adopted her they all looked forward to a time when the grips of her past let her free. 

When Dawn arrived at the hospital, Brielle was much worse than she expected, an unknown infection was ravaging her body. Dawn had just spent the day with her and couldn’t understand how this perfectly healthy mother could become gravely ill in such a short time?

Picking Up the Pieces is the story of Brielle’s journey, from an abused child, caught in the foster system while speaking little to no English, to a happy thriving  young mom. And how her mother, Dawn, and the rest of her family, are picking up the pieces to carry on her daughter’s memory. 

What if my purpose in life is to be a mom, her mom, and to share her story, our story, to help others? I can’t walk away from the opportunity that has presented itself in my thoughts, even if I can’t not see a clear path.

Dawn Ruggie

It is the story of a mother’s journey through grief and with God’s help the realization that she can carry on Brie’s legacy of courage and love to help other families walking a similar path.

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Reader Reviews

True Faith
When I started reading this I just could not put it down. The love Dawn has is just Beautiful, know matter what they throw at her she wiil not give up. It showed me that it’s hard to give up someone you love but you have to know that they will always be a part of you .Really they never leave you. I know this because I just loss 2 sisters two months apart. I will always miss them but I will continue to live with the Love we shared. Thank you for opening up my eyes.


The strength of a mother
If you are looking for a really good book, “Picking up the Pieces” by Dawn Ruggie is for you! I could not put it down. It had every emotion joy, happiness, sadness, love, pain, heartache, and grief. But most of all it is filled with the strength and courage of a mother fighting a fight most of us could never even imagine. She shares how she was able to pick up the broken pieces and tell their story to help others find strength to keep going.


A story of a mother’s love, patience and faith in God to honor her daughter forever.
Picking up the pieces is a moving story of a mother’s love and understanding. A triumphant journey of a young woman who was broken and her quest for happiness and finding her own way. Then a mother who turned to God when her daughter was called home so young, to see that her story does not end and lives on. Dawn moves you with her quiet strength, patience, and faith that God has a plan for us all.


A moving story of a mother dealing with the loss of her daughter and how to keep moving forward.
This book was beautifully written. Dawn was able to give a different approach at dealing with the loss of a loved one. It was very inspirational and has absolutely given me a different way to approach dealing with a personal loss. I highly recommend this book to anyone looking for a different approach at dealing with any loss or life in general.