When Leigh Sales began interviewing people about sudden tragedy for her book, she couldn’t have guessed that just months later she too would know what it was like to have her world turned upside down.
In July, just a few months before her book Any Ordinary Day was released, the 7.30 host received a call from her family.
She was told that her father, Dale Sales, had suffered a heart attack and wasn’t going to survive. She needed to board a plane to Brisbane to say her goodbyes.
Speaking to Mia Freedman on Mamamia’s No Filter podcast this week, Leigh wondered if she had tempted fate.
“It seems like writing a book about blindside it feels almost like I invited something like that to happen to me,” she said.
However, she also said interviewing people who had also lost loved ones suddenly, such as Walter Mikac – whose wife and two little girls were killed in the Port Arthur massacre – helped her prepare, in a way, for this “very sad time”.
“Dad was on life support and I knew that I needed to be there when he actually died – which I think I might have been scared to do before I wrote the book,” she told Mia.
The journalist added that the extensive research she’d done on the brain and how people respond to sudden trauma also helped her to understand why she was behaving in certain ways.