653. Steph Catudal, Author of Everything All at Once


“I thought I was leaving my grief behind. I truly thought I had finished grieving. When Rivs got sick, that narrative was cracked wide open. And I learned that you never finish grieving, and that’s OK. Healing is a continuous journey, and the grief kind of comes along with us and becomes a part of us. And that’s a beautiful thing.”

It’s hard to find suitable words to do justice for Steph Catudal’s words. Her New York Times best-selling memoir, Everything All at Once, is heart-wrenching, gripping, evocative, and emotional. It’s the story of Steph’s childhood — of losing her dad to lung cancer when she was just 14, and the turmoil, rebellion, and upheaval that filled the following years. It’s simultaneously the story of her adulthood — of nearly losing her husband, Tommy Rivers Puzey, to lung cancer, and of his 84-day medically induced coma. It’s the story of grief, survival, strength, caregiving, motherhood, and so much more. And it’s about running, but it’s not about running at all.


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What you’ll get on this episode:

  • What life is like now that Steph’s story is out in the world (2:45)
  • On perception vs. reality (5:35)
  • Steph’s original plan for a book — and what it ended up being (8:50)
  • How Steph was able to recall such vivid details from the hardest days of her life (16:00)
  • The times when Steph felt scared (23:20)
  • How Steph learned — and allowed herself — to be vulnerable as a mother (26:15)
  • Is the rebellious girl somewhere inside Steph? (34:25)
  • “I see your heart and it is good.” (37:45)
  • On fear and the possibility of Rivs dying (41:10)
  • What Steph’s relationship with running is like (43:30)
  • What it was like when Rivs returned to the marathon, completing the 2021 New York City Marathon (50:30)
  • On marriage (55:55)

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