In this deeply emotional memoir, a longtime ESPN writer reflects on the suicide of his son Max and delves into how their complicated relationship led him to see grief as love.
In February 2015, Ivan Maisel received a call that would alter his life forever: his son Max’s car had been found abandoned in a parking lot next to Lake Ontario. Two months later, Max’s body would be found in the lake.
There’d been no note or obvious indication that Max wanted to harm himself; he’d signed up for a year-long subscription to a dating service; he’d spent the day he disappeared doing photography work for school. And this uncertainty became part of his father’s grief. I Keep Trying to Catch His Eye explores with grace, depth, and refinement the tragically transformative reality of losing a child. But it also tells the deeply human and deeply empathetic story of a father’s relationship with his son, of its complications, and of Max and Ivan’s struggle—as is the case for so many parents and their children—to connect.
I Keep Trying to Catch His Eye is a stunning, poignant exploration of the father-son relationship, of how our tendency to overlook men’s mental health can have devastating consequences, and how ultimately letting those who grieve do so openly and freely can lead to greater healing.