On her blog, Beckie of Beckie’s Mental Mess has introduced a set of prompts that touches on mental illness. Each week she offers up 2 prompts for bloggers to use in a nonfiction, fiction, or poetry piece. You can respond to either prompt, or both. For more information, clickhere.This week, I am responding to Prompt 1.
It’s my pleasure to introduce this week’s topic for Week #8 “Working on Us” by
There seems to be 2 camps when it comes to books: those who prefer books in print, and those who prefer a digital version, or e-book (Kindle device/app, et al). And I’m sure there are some who like both, or even Audible, which doesn’t require you to read at all! Technically.
I like e-books better because they’re more portable. The reason I first bought my Kindle device, however, is because my husband and I had so many books that we were running out of book shelves, and places to put said shelves. My Kindle has approximately 600 books with very few, if any, duplicates in print. This is in addition to the shelved books that we own. It amazes me that my little device holds more than the number of books on my shelves! But if I wanted to, I could take all my e-books with me and go.
Needless to say, I’m an avid reader. I’m almost always in the middle of reading a book. Sometimes I finish it overnight; other times it takes like 3 weeks. I like to read fiction, nonfiction (mostly memoirs), and short story collections. I used to devour poetry, but I haven’t read a book of poems in maybe 10 years.
Also, I like always having a book with me, especially for times when I have to wait: waiting for an appointment, waiting for a prescription, waiting for my hair to process while getting it colored. I have the Kindle app on my phone (so technically, you don’t even need the device), so I don’t even have to pack the Kindle in my purse. If I didn’t have my phone with me, I would be climbing the walls because I hate waiting. I get bored and then antsy. And I would hate being unable to communicate with anyone if I had to. When was the last time you saw a payphone? Lol
I have a lot of bad habits, but I’m trying to establish good ones. Here are some things that I can do more often:
EXERCISE: Well, I exercise nearly every single day by walking on the treadmill and doing one exercise, like jumping jacks, push-ups, crunches, lunges, or squats. The former, I do for 10 minutes. The latter, according to that particular fitness challenge, I’m supposed to do 3 of the above exercises a day. I only do one because I can’t do all 3 one after the other yet.
I can’t walk for more than 10 minutes because it is so frickin’ boring, even though I always read a book — which helps. Plus, it’s challenging for me right now. I went from doing zero exercises to what I do today. I can increase the length of time or the speed in which I walk, slowly. I feel that I can increase the exercises, but in very small increments. My therapist says that any movement is good.
DIET: I feel that I can eat better than I do, like eat more salads because they aren’t as calorie dense as say, a cheese quesadilla. The problem is I don’t like salads. It’s not that I don’t like vegetables — I hate trying to spear the pieces of lettuce with my fork. It’s unsatisfying not to get a nice mouthful of food. I do occasionally eat — and enjoy eating — a salad, and I can choose salad more often when we eat out.
READ: I haven’t been reading anywhere near as much as I used to. Part of the reason is I don’t have enough time. Another is because the last few books I read have bored me.
I’m currently reading Educated by Tara Westover. It’s a memoir about how the author grew up in a survivalist family. That is, the dad was convinced that the End of Days were near and made sure his family would be protected. He also didn’t believe in the government, so some of the kids didn’t have birth certificates or drivers licenses.
It’s interesting and I like it so far. But it’s not the kind of book I can’t put down and finish in a day.
So these are 3 areas of my life that I want to improve: slowly increase the number of exercises that I do; eat more salads/make healthier food choices; and make time to read every day, not just while I’m on the treadmill.
NOTE: This is not a book review; these are just my thoughts–which may wander.
This book’s rating is 4.08 of 5 stars on Goodreads, so I guess people really liked it. I gave it a 3. It was just okay.
While the author is a great storyteller/narrator, what really killed it for me is that so much of the story is unbelievable. Anyone who’s ever been in a psych ward would know that.
At one point Lukach describes how he and other family visitors were allowed to hang out in the wife’s hospital room during a holiday. Are you kidding me? That would never be allowed in real life.
In a real psych ward, visitors are welcome to hang out in the visiting room with the patient; nowhere else. They enforce that rule. But in all the time I’ve spent in psych wards, I’ve never seen anyone try to break it.
Who’s “they,” you might be wondering. “They” are nurses and mental health workers. The latter are, in my experience, mostly male, strong, and probably worked security in the past. But that’s just a guess.
Anyway, there were many other unbelievable scenes in the book, none of which I remember of course, thanks to ECT. Well, and it’s been a few months since I read it; I’m only now writing down my thoughts.
Have you read My Lovely Wife in the Psych Ward? What are your thoughts?
As I mentioned in my last post, my husband and I flew to Savannah for a vacation in March. I’m a big fan of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, both the book (the Book) and the movie (the Movie), and ever since I read/watched the (true) story, I wanted to visit the places John Berendt, the author, did. In fact, we got to do that because we went on a walking tour that was specifically about the Book/Movie. We even visited the house in which the main character lived, and which was used for filming the Movie.
An image of the Bird Girl, a sculpture created by Sylvia Shaw Judson, graces the Book’s cover. The photo gained immense popularity. So many people visited the statue in the cemetery where it was placed, that the family who commissioned the sculpture had it moved to the Telfair Museums, a small group of art museums, where it stands today. I didn’t do the sculpture justice, but this was the best picture I could take.
Before our trip, we learned that Savannah has the second largest St. Patrick’s Day festivities in the United States. (Boston is number one.) Neither of us are huge party animals, but there were plenty! We were fortunate that the hotel where we stayed had a semi-private balcony, which is where we watched the obligatory St. Paddy’s Day parade.
These are just a few of the highlights from our trip. We did many things–ate at delicious restaurants, went for plenty of walks on the cobble-stoned streets, went on a boat to sightsee dolphins. We absolutely loved it there!