Depression is a mood disorder that causes a persistent feeling of sadness and loss of interest. It is way more common than you think. You are not alone. If you find you have some of these signs, open your mouth and ask for help. It gets better. I promise.
- Persistent feelings of sadness, tearfulness, emptiness, or hopelessness
- Irritability or frustration, even over small matters
- Loss of interest and/or pleasure in normal activities
- Feelings of guilt, restlessness, or worthlessness
- Decreased energy or fatigue
- Slowed thinking, moving, or talking
- Decreased appetite and weight loss, or increased cravings and weight gain
- Trouble thinking, concentrating, making decisions, or remembering things
- Thoughts of death or suicide, or suicide attempts
- Aches or pains, headaches, cramps, or digestive problems without a clear physical cause and/or that do not ease even with treatment
For more information go to http://www.nimh.nih.gov or call their hotline @ 1-866-615-6464
Now, Go. See. Do.
Month two of quarantine and I’m still reading. In between reading, I’m doing puzzles and listening to podcasts (oh, and homeschooling my kids). The outside world may be scary and unsure, but in my house is a library of adventure. I choose adventure.
Read All Day: April
1. The Night Tiger by Yangsze Choo ⭐️⭐️⭐️
We were a chocolate-box family, I thought. Brightly wrapped on the outside and oozing sticky darkness within.
2. Will My Cat Eat My Eyeballs: Big Questions by Tiny Mortals About Death by Caitlin Doughty ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
We can’t make death fun, but we can make learning about it fun. Death is science and history, art and literature. It bridges every culture and unites the whole of humanity!
3. Normal People by Sally Rooney ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
I can’t imagine what my life would be like if I cared what people thought of me.
4. Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Your shoes are carrying your most valuable possession—your life. Do not delay. Everything else can be replaced.
5. The Devil Wears Prada by Lauren Weisberger ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Insatiable, impatient, impossible.
6. Eliza and Her Monsters by Francesca Zappia ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
There is a small monster in my brain that controls my doubt.
7. The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Try to be a filter, not a sponge.
8. A Woman is No Man by Etaf Rum ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Where I come from, voicelessness is the condition of my gender, as normal as the bosoms on a woman’s chest, as necessary as the next generation growing inside her belly.
9. The Gift of Failure: How the Best Parents Learn to Let Go So Their Children Can Succeed by Jessica Lahey ⭐️⭐️⭐️
In order to help children make the most of their education, parents must begin to relinquish control and focus on three goals: embracing opportunities to fail, finding ways to learn from that failure, and creating positive home-school relationships.
10. The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides ⭐️⭐️⭐️
Choosing a lover is a lot like choosing a therapist. We need to ask ourselves, is this someone who will be honest with me, listen to criticism, admit making mistakes, and not promise the impossible?
11. The Watsons Go to Birmingham-1963 by Christopher Paul Curtis ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
I learned about getting saved. I learned how someone could come to you when you were feeling real, real bad and could take all of your problems away and make you feel better. I learned that the person who saved you, your personal saver, was sent by God to protect you and to help you out.
12. I’ve Got Your Number by Sophie Kinsella ⭐️⭐️⭐️
My phone’s my life. I can’t exist without it. It’s a vital organ.
13. Evvie Drake Starts Over by Linda Holmes ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Your head is the house you live in, so you have to do the maintenance.
14. Dear Girls: Intimate Tales, Untold Secrets, & Advice for Living Your Best Life by Ali Wong ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
The answers to making it, to me, are a lot more universal than anyone’s race or gender, and center on having a tolerance for delayed gratification, a passion for the craft, and a willingness to fail.
15. Get Well Soon: History’s Worst Plagues and the Heroes Who Fought Them by Jennifer Wright ⭐️⭐️⭐️
Diseases don’t ruin lives just because they rot off noses. They destroy people if the rest of society isolates them and treats them as undeserving of help and respect.
16. The Second Sister by Claire Kendal ⭐️⭐️⭐️
Why are so many fairytales about sisters saving their brothers? All the ones you told me last week were.
He is right. Hansel and Gretel. The Seven Ravens. The Twelve Brothers. Our mother seemed to know hundreds of them.
We should write a different story. I want one with a sister who saves her sister.
17. When Life Gives You Lululemons by Lauren Weisberger ⭐️⭐️⭐️
I feel like we just stepped into an episode of Housewives.
Now, Go. See. Do.
I have always loved reading about diseases and their effects on communities. Even though I knew the reality of living through one, I never really imagined I would. Well, here we are. So, here’s a short list of the books I’ve read in the past, never imagining I could possibly be a character in a similar story in the future.
Oh, and my favorite podcast:)
1. Ghost Map: The Story of London’s Most Terrifying Epidemic-and How It Changed Science, Cities, and the Modern World by Steven Johnson
From Steven Johnson, the dynamic thinker routinely compared to James Gleick, Dava Sobel, and Malcolm Gladwell, The Ghost Map is a riveting page-turner about a real-life historical hero, Dr. John Snow. It’s the summer of 1854, and London is just emerging as one of the first modern cities in the world. But lacking the infrastructure—garbage removal, clean water, sewers—necessary to support its rapidly expanding population, the city has become the perfect breeding ground for a terrifying disease no one knows how to cure. As the cholera outbreak takes hold, a physician and a local curate are spurred to action—and ultimately solve the most pressing medical riddle of their time. In a triumph of multidisciplinary thinking, Johnson illuminates the intertwined histories and inter-connectedness of the spread of disease, contagion theory, the rise of cities, and the nature of scientific inquiry, offering both a riveting history and a powerful explanation of how it has shaped the world we live in.
2. In the Sanctuary of Outcasts by Neil W. White III
The emotional, incredible true story of Neil White, a man who discovers the secret to happiness, leading a fulfilling life, and the importance of fatherhood in the most unlikely of places—the last leper colony in the continental United States.
3. The Hot Zone: The Terrifying True Story of the Origins of the Ebola Virus by Richard Preston
A highly infectious, deadly virus from the central African rain forest suddenly appears in the suburbs of Washington, D.C. There is no cure. In a few days 90 percent of its victims are dead. A secret military SWAT team of soldiers and scientists is mobilized to stop the outbreak of this exotic “hot” virus. The Hot Zone tells this dramatic story, giving a hair-raising account of the appearance of rare and lethal viruses and their “crashes” into the human race. Shocking, frightening, and impossible to ignore, The Hot Zone proves that truth really is scarier than fiction.
4. Pandemic 1918: The Story of the Deadliest Influenza in History by Catharine Arnold
In January 1918, as World War I raged on, a new and terrifying virus began to spread across the globe. In three successive waves, from 1918 to 1919, influenza killed more than 50 million people. German soldiers termed it Blitzkatarrh, British soldiers referred to it as Flanders Grippe, but world-wide, the pandemic gained the notorious title of “Spanish Flu.” Nowhere on earth escaped: the United States recorded 550,000 deaths (five times its total military fatalities in the war), while European deaths totaled more than two million.
Amid the war, some governments suppressed news of the outbreak. Even as entire battalions were decimated, with both the Allies and the Germans suffering massive casualties, the details of many servicemen’s deaths were hidden to protect public morale. Meanwhile, civilian families were being struck down in their homes. Philadelphia ran out of gravediggers and coffins, and mass burial trenches had to be excavated with steam shovels. Spanish flu conjured up the specter of the Black Death of 1348 and the great plague of 1665, while the medical profession, shattered after five terrible years of conflict, lacked the resources to contain and defeat this new enemy. Through primary and archival sources, historian Catharine Arnold gives readers the first truly global account of this terrible epidemic.
5. Fever 1793 by Laurie Halse Anderson
It’s late summer 1793, and the streets of Philadelphia are abuzz with mosquitoes and rumors of fever. Down near the docks, many have taken ill, and the fatalities are mounting. Now they include Polly, the serving girl at the Cook Coffeehouse. But fourteen-year-old Mattie Cook doesn’t get a moment to mourn the passing of her childhood playmate. New customers have overrun her family’s coffee shop, located far from the mosquito-infested river, and Mattie’s concerns of fever are all but overshadowed by dreams of growing her family’s small business into a thriving enterprise. But when the fever begins to strike closer to home, Mattie’s struggle to build a new life must give way to a new fight—the fight to stay alive.
6. Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel
Set in the days of civilization’s collapse, Station Eleven tells the story of a Hollywood star, his would-be savior, and a nomadic group of actors roaming the scattered outposts of the Great Lakes region, risking everything for art and humanity.
One snowy night a famous Hollywood actor slumps over and dies onstage during a production of King Lear. Hours later, the world as we know it begins to dissolve. Moving back and forth in time—from the actor’s early days as a film star to fifteen years in the future, when a theater troupe known as the Traveling Symphony roams the wasteland of what remains—this suspenseful, elegiac, spellbinding novel charts the strange twists of fate that connect five people: the actor, the man who tried to save him, the actor’s first wife, his oldest friend, and a young actress with the Traveling Symphony, caught in the crosshairs of a dangerous self-proclaimed prophet.
Grad students studying disease ecology, Erin and Erin found themselves disenchanted with the insular world of academia. They wanted a way to share their love of epidemics and weird medical mysteries with the world, not just colleagues. Plus, who doesn’t love an excuse to have a cocktail while chatting about pus and poop?
Now, Go. See. Do.
Welcome to quarantine reading. What else is there to do? Honestly, I could be cleaning out a closet (or two) but that’s not going to take my mind off the reality of what’s going on in the world. I’ve never been more grateful for my “Want to Read” list on Goodreads.
Read All Day: March
1. Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan ⭐️⭐️
You know, I’m really starting to think the whole world is just a patchwork quilt of crazy little cults, all with their own secret spaces, their own records, their own rules.
2. A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder by Holly Jackson ⭐️⭐️
The people you love weren’t algebra: to be calculated, subtracted, or held at arm’s length across a decimal point.
3. Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
There’s too much blank sky where a tree once stood.
4. The Dry by Jane Harper ⭐️⭐️⭐️
Hidden somewhere in the dark, the cicadas screeched.
5. Alone: Orphaned on the Ocean by Richard Logan, Tere Duperrault ⭐️⭐️⭐️
She really was a female Moses in the bulrushes, a waif cast adrift on the waters who would begin her life all over again, almost from scratch.
6. The Moment of Lift: How Empowering Women Changes the World by Melinda Gates ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
That is why we women have to lift each other up—not to replace men at the top of the hierarchy, but to become partners with men in ending hierarchy.
7. The Girl With the Lower Back Tattoo by Amy Schumer ⭐️⭐️⭐️
I wear my mistakes like badges of honor, and I celebrate them.
8. Summer of ’69 by Elin Hilderbrand ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Telling the truth when you’ve done something wrong is the most terrifying thing in the world.
9. Half Broke Horses by Jeanette Walls ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Sometimes something catastrophic can occur in a split second that changes a person’s life forever; other times one minor incident can lead to another and then another and another, eventually setting off just as big a change in a body’s life.
10. Son (The Giver Quartet, #4) by Lois Lowry ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Evil can do anything, for a price.
11. Lost and Found by Orson Scott Card ⭐️⭐️⭐️
If everybody says something, it’s almost always wrong.
12. The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Hate can be passionate or disengaged; it can come from dislike but also from fear.
13. No Visible Bruises: What We Don’t Know About Domestic Violence Can Kill Us By Rachel Louise Snyder ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
…for every woman killed in the United States from domestic violence homicide, nearly nine are almost killed.
14. Funny, You Don’t Look Autistic: A Comedians Guide to Life on the Spectrum by Michael McCreary ⭐️⭐️⭐️
I was diagnosed with autism at the age of five. I wasn’t diagnosed as a comedian until much later, though I always loved to perform and make people laugh. When I started doing stand-up in my teens, I realized that I could use comedy to help demystify autism and break down stereotypes.
15. The Shadow Land by Elizabeth Kostova ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
It was the beginning of that long bifurcation that became my life: Obey and hate yourself, survive. Disobey, redeem yourself, perish. I thought later how simply and quickly they had introduced that concept to me, as easily as breaking a little finger.
16. Recursion by Blake Crouch ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Is déjà vu actually the specter of false timelines that never happened but did, casting their shadows upon reality?
Now, Go. See. Do.
It’s cold here and getting through the tail end of winter would be hard for me if I didn’t have some good books to read. A few of my choices were in honor of Black History Month.
Read All Day: February
1. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
They’re certainly entitled to think that, and they’re entitled to full respect for their opinions… but before I can live with other folks I’ve got to live with myself. The one thing that doesn’t abide by majority rule is a person’s conscience.
2. Ask Again, Yes by Mary Beth Keane ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
We repeat what we don’t repair.
3. Maybe You Should Talk to Someone by Lori Gottlieb ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Don’t judge your feelings; notice them. Use them as your map. Don’t be afraid of the truth.
4. Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
And I get up because it is the only thing I can do.
5. The Family Upstairs by Lisa Jewell ⭐️⭐️⭐️
I’d subliminally determined at this point that the only way to really know what was going on in the world was to listen to women talk. Anyone who ignores the chatter of women is poorer by any measure.
6. The Girl with the Louding Voice by Abi Dare ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
I feel a free that I didn’t feel in long time and when I smile, it climb from inside my stomach and spread itself on my teeths.
7. The Weed That Strings the Hangman’s Bag by Alan Bradley ⭐️⭐️⭐️
I have learned that under certain circumstances, a fib is not only permissible, but can even be an act of perfect grace.
8. Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel ⭐️⭐️⭐️
What I mean to say is, the more you remember, the more you’ve lost.
Now, Go. See. Do.
What would I do without books? I often feel like I don’t have enough time to read all the books on my list and I start to panic. Then, I remind myself, it’s not an assignment I have to finish. It’s purely for my enjoyment and to open my mind to other worlds and perspectives. And then I continue on reading.
Read All Day: January
1. The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold ⭐️⭐️⭐️
Murderers are not monsters, they’re men. And that’s the most frightening thing about them.
2. Coraline by Neil Gaiman ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Now you people have names. That’s because you don’t know who you are. We know who we are, so we don’t need names.
3. Do You Mind If I Cancel? (Things That Still Annoy Me) by Gary Janetti ⭐️⭐️⭐️
Don’t worry about being normal. It’s an awful thing to aspire to.
4. Gathering Blue (The Giver, #2) by Lois Lowry ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Take pride in your pain; you are stronger than those who have none.
5. So Close to Being the Sh*t, Y’all Don’t Even Know by Retta ⭐️⭐️⭐️
Bitch, stop wasting time fearing the worst! Living through the worst is never as hard as fearing it. Fight the fear and go do what you gotta do. That’s what you came here for.
6. Nothing To See Here by Kevin Wilson ⭐️⭐️⭐️
I started to care less about the future. I cared more about making the present tolerable. And time passed.
7. Whisper Network by Chandler Baker ⭐️⭐️⭐️
We followed the recipe and set the timer for eighteen months and figured by then, the glass ceiling would have shattered under the weight of all the world’s leaning women.
8. Messenger (The Giver, #3) by Lois Lowry ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Things seem more when you’re little. They seem bigger, and distances seem farther.
9. The Rosie Result by Graeme Simsion ⭐️⭐️⭐️
It is a sign of intelligence to recognize our limitations and of maturity to seek help when required.
10. The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Sunset Towers faced east and had no towers.
Now, Go. See. Do.
Ahh! How is it almost July and I haven’t posted Mays list yet? Well, that’s what happens in the month of May when you have three kids Maycember is a real thing, people. Amongst the craziness, I still managed to read some great books. Did you survive?
Read All Day: May
1. The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane by Lisa See
Tea is to heal. Always remember that food is medicine, and medicine is food. If you take care of the trees, the trees will take care of you.
2. Unsheltered by Barbara Kingsolver
Scientists are not like other people, sir. We cannot slam our portals. We have to follow evidence where it leads, even if no one likes that place. Even if it suggests that all we have ever believed might be mistaken.
3. All the Missing Girls by Megan Miranda
People were like Russian nesting dolls – versions stacked inside the latest edition. But they all still lived inside, unchanged, just out of sight.
4. The Curious World of Calpurnia Tate by Jacqueline Kelly
Could anything top the promise and potential of a blank page? What could be more satisfying? Never mind that it would soon be crammed with awkward penmanship, that my handwriting inevitably sloped downhill to the right-hand corner, that I blotted my ink, that my drawings never came out the way I saw them in my head. Never mind all that. What counted was possibility. You could live on possibility, at least for a while.
5. A Ladder to the Sky by John Boyne
I think Maurice is whatever he needs to be, whenever he needs to be it. He’s an operator, that’s for sure.
6. The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
I feel like the word shatter.
7. Pandemic 1918 by Catharine Arnold
However, as bad as things were, the worst was yet to come, for germs would kill more people than bullets. By the time that last fever broke and the last quarantine sign came down, the world had lost 3-5% of its population.
8. My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante
There was something unbearable in the things, in the people, in the buildings, in the streets that, only if you reinvented it all, as in a game, became acceptable. The essential, however, was to know how to play, and she and I, only she and I, knew how to do it.
9. The Cactus by Sarah Haywood
Dealing with members of the opposite sex isn’t that dissimilar from training a dog; you need to be firm and persistent.
10. Necessary Lies by Diane Chamberlain
Sometimes, though, you could do the right thing and still feel sick with doubt.
11. The Lost for Words Bookshop by Stephanie Butland
I reminded myself that a beginning and an ending are two different places, and, in real life, you might be able to make your own ending, whatever had gone before.
Now, Go. See. Do.
= Favorite Read
= Read with Kids
Is anyone else as ready for summer as I am? Aprils sporadic weather had me feeling, well…blah. At least I had some good books to get me through.
Read All Day: April
1. Watching You by Lisa Jewel
Because that’s the thing with getting what you want: all that yearning and dreaming and fantasizing leaves a great big hole that can only be filled with more yearning and dreaming and fantasizing.
2. The Magician by Michael Scott
If you tell people everything you take away their opportunity to learn.
3. I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith
Perhaps if I make myself write I shall find out what is wrong with me.
4. Winter Garden by Kristin Hannah
We women make choices for others, not for ourselves, and when we are mothers, we . . . bear what we must for our children.
5. When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi
Human knowledge is never contained in one person. It grows from the relationships we create between each other and the world, and still it is never complete.
6. Hey Ladies!: The Story of 8 Best Friends, 1 Year, and Way, Way Too Many Emails by Michelle Markowitz, Caroline Moss and Illustrated by Carolyn Bahar
Mason jars. Chalk menus. Social media tie-ins. I’m probably speaking another language to you, right!?
7. The Rosie Effect by Graeme Simsion
Dishonesty was part of the price of being a social animal, and of marriage in particular.
8. Cinder by Marissa Meyer
Mirrors have an uncanny way of telling the truth.
9. The Indigo Girl by Natasha Boyd
It seemed a ridiculously careless accident that made me a female rather than a male. The rest of the time I wondered why it should make a difference at all. But it did.
10. Highly Illogical Behavior by John Corey Whaley
What he feared the most was that all this hiding had made it impossible for him to ever be found again.
Now, Go. See. Do.
= Favorite Read
= Read with Kids