2019 Reflections: Travel

At the beginning of 2018 I told myself I wasn’t going to do a lot of travelling, and then I went a whole bunch of places. At the beginning of this year I told myself I would be going several places, and then barely went anywhere at all.

This made me happy, because although there are things I like about travelling, really I prefer staying at home. Also, last year I flew back from Texas in a tropical storm and it was terrifying, and now I have developed a fear of flying, which is inconvenient for me but convenient for the planet. Read more

Books of the Week: Winter Walks, Counselling, Apéros and Voodoo

This year I have a lot to read, which is exciting. I’m starting uni this week, which I’m sure will bring its own reading list; I’m working on a couple of new papers; I’m writing a novel; and of course there’s the usual TBR pile of things I’ve found that looked interesting.

Last week I read four books, although the first one is cheating a bit; it took me a full two weeks to read because it was a textbook, so although I finished it this week even I am not quite a fast enough reader to manage fitting in a textbook around working full-time.  Read more

Am I Normal Yet? by Holly Bourne

Rarely do I read a book that talks about mental illness in a way that’s both accurate and relatable. Am I Normal Yet? is such a book.

It’s about a girl with OCD. Her name is Evie and she just wants to be normal, whatever that means. She’s been working towards it with her therapist and making good progress since being discharged from hospital, where she’d stayed for a while due to her mental health problems.  Read more

A Special Post For A Special Person On A Special Day

On March 4th 2014, my friend Jo killed herself. She wouldn’t have understood how much we’d miss her, because when you’re in that kind of state of mind you don’t get it.

I do miss her, though. If you’re thinking about killing yourself, you probably have people who will miss you too. They won’t even know before you die exactly which things they’ll miss about you. Some will be obvious, of course, but others not so much.  Read more

Let’s Talk About Therapy

I was reminded this morning that it’s World Mental Health Day when I posted an article by Dr. Walid Abdul-Hamid over on Expat Focus about mental health in the workplace.

In the past I’ve talked a bit about mental health on this blog, and most years I just reshare that post because I’m lazy I think it might be helpful to someone.

But this year, after reading through Dr. Walid’s article, I thought it might be worth having a brief chat about therapy.

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The Break by Marian Keyes

Marian Keyes is one of those writers whose work I am aware of – I mean, she’s one of the most popular authors out there, how can you not be? – but which I don’t read very often. I’m fairly sure I must have read something of hers at some point before this, but if I have I can’t remember what it was. So when FMCM sent me a review copy of The Break I was very much coming at it with an open mind and few prior expectations.

And so I settled down with a notebook and a drippy-wine-bottle candle at the ready, and I started to read.

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