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Reasons to Stay Alive
Reasons to Stay Alive | Matt Haig
One of Entertainment Weekly's 25 most anticipated books of 2016Matt Haigs accessible and life-affirming memoir of his struggle with depression, and how his triumph over the illness taught him to live Like nearly one in five people, Matt Haig suffers from depression. Reasons to Stay Alive is Matts inspiring account of how, minute by minute and day by day, he overcame the disease with the help of reading, writing, and the love of his parents and his girlfriend (and now-wife), Andrea. And eventually, he learned to appreciate life all the more for it. Everyones lives are touched by mental illness: if we do not suffer from it ourselves, then we have a friend or loved one who does. Matts frankness about his experiences is both inspiring to those who feel daunted by depression and illuminating to those who are mystified by it. Above all, his humor and encouragement never let us lose sight of hope. Speaking as his present self to his former self in the depths of depression, Matt is adamant that the oldest clich is the truestthere is light at the end of the tunnel. He teaches us to celebrate the small joys and moments of peace that life brings, and reminds us that there are always reasons to stay alive.From the Trade Paperback edition.
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JennyM
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As I emerge out of the festive fog, still not really sure what day it is, here‘s this week and a bits #bookreport. I also read an ARC, not pictured, but it was so bad I‘ll say no more about that 😬

I finished the year on 192 books, which is a record for me, and these were pretty good reads to end the year with.

Tanisha_A Wow! Amazing! Also, be safe. ❤️ 3w
TrishB Great stats 👍🏻 3w
JennyM @Tanisha_A thank you, T 😘 We aren‘t near the fires but my heart is breaking as the country burns. 3w
See All 20 Comments
JennyM @TrishB turning off the telly has had a huge impact on the amount of my reading! 3w
TrishB Apart from football I don‘t really watch telly!! 3w
Kalalalatja Hope you have had some lovely holiday days! And that book in the top left corner looks interesting, what did you think about it? 😊 3w
JennyM @Kalalalatja happy new year! Hope you‘ve had a good holiday too. It was a fascinating read - she‘s a well known Aussie journalist who was duped by a man who wasn‘t who he said he was. And apparently this type of thing is all too common! 3w
JennyM @TrishB if it‘s football the telly is on at ours too! ⚽️ 3w
Sace Sounds like you had a very productive reading year! 3w
Cinfhen Amazing 🙌🏻192 books is incredible!!!! I really liked 3w
Crazeedi congrats on great job! I have 21 Truths to read! 3w
Suet624 Matt Haig‘s book was terrific. 3w
JennyM @Sace @cinfhen @crazeedi Thank you. I read so many great books, too, which is the best thing. I also really liked 21 truths. To say it‘s written in list form, it got me teary in a few places 😢 3w
JennyM @Suet624 it was a great book to read around the mayhem of Christmas - a good dose of perspective! Hope you had a good festive holiday, Sue, and happy new year 😘 3w
Cinfhen It sounded so gimmicky but it worked so well!! Really Original (edited) 3w
Suet624 Had a lovely holiday, thank you. Best wishes for a wonderful year ahead. 3w
Rissreads 192 books! Wow! Are they a mixture of read and listened too? 3w
JennyM @Rissreads yep...it was 45 audios and 147 print books. If only I could read that number in print. How are you...heading to NZ soon? Xx 3w
Rissreads I read 44 print books and listened to 17. I didn't quiet achieve my goal of 50 print books, but there is always this year! I did more than double the amount of Australian books I read though, so very happy with that. Yep, I am sitting at the airport now waiting to board my flight. I catch up with Paula @Centique after the 15th. This is my first overseas trip in 24 yrs! I'm very excited to be travelling and to spend some time with my daughter. 3w
JennyM @Rissreads oh yey!!! Have a safe flight and enjoy your time with your daughter and Paula, too. I‘d love to see your photos with @Centique Happy holidays lovely 😊 (edited) 3w
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arlenefinnigan
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Pickpick

This is a great read. Matt Haig has a really good way of describing his experiences if mental illness honestly and vividly without sounding self indulgent (I know that sounds harsh but I've stopped reading a couple of mental health books because they just felt tedious). There's a real warmth and empathy to his writing.

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arlenefinnigan
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Next up (why yes my festive reading is particularly chirpy this year)

JennyM I‘m about to start this one - I share your festive spirit 🤣🤣 1mo
arlenefinnigan @JennyM ooh that's good that one. 1mo
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laurenduke300
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Pickpick

If you struggle with depression, please read this book. Books really can save your life.

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BookNAround
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Pickpick

Haig has writtten a short, powerful memoir of his time with severe depression. It is honest and hard and ultimately hopeful although his attitude towards medication might not be helpful to someone suffering. Full review at https://booknaround.blogspot.com/2019/09/review-reasons-to-stay-alive-by-matt.ht...

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lovelybookshelf
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Pickpick

What an insightful, hopeful, loving book. This is a must-read for anyone with depression and/or anxiety. Highly recommend the audiobook. #depression #anxiety #mentalillness #memoir #selfhelp #nonfiction

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cobwebmoth
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@BookNAround Thank you so much for this #randomactofkindness ! You are so kind to think of me. Your timing is perfect. *hugs*

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BookNAround
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A stormy night, a book, and a magazine about books. As long as the power stays on, I‘m all set.

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thebookworm_reviews
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Pickpick

Recommended to me when I was going through an incredibly hard time. I wasn‘t optimistic and felt it would be a chore to read. Oh, how wrong I was. Sometimes it‘s easy to think that you‘re the only one who can feel this bad but it‘s a relief to know that someone else has felt the same way. You‘re entitled to feel how you do and the hardest step is reaching out. Highly recommended for anyone who is suffering from low mood, depression and/or anxiety.

Caroline2 I really enjoyed this book too. 👍🏻 6mo
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tealwish
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Pickpick

If you suffer from depression and anxiety or want to understand someone who does, this honest book explains the true grit of it. There is the sadness and hope of his personal story, but also so many collected reasons to stay alive. This isn't self help but the reality of what mental health issues look like.

Suet624 One of my favorite books. 7mo
tealwish @Suet624 I know! I need to own a copy so I can highlight and underline. 7mo
Suet624 I handed copies out like candy to friends. So good. 😁 7mo
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my.books.in.squares
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Hope everyone is having a good Easter weekend.

I am loving this sunny Scottish weather, spending today in my garden reading this gem.

#currentlyreading #mentalhealth

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ExpatsandEnglishBooks
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Reason #183 to stay alive: picnics in the park on sunny days! #books #bookstagram

karajay Ughhh a book picnic sounds amazing! 9mo
ExpatsandEnglishBooks It was so relaxing and fun! I Highly recommend doing one at least once ☺️ 9mo
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Catrina
Pickpick

A perspective on personal struggles so relevant today. The ending of all of the things he has taken joy in after a time that he thought he would feel joy again is so moving and a constant reminder to me to be thankful and take in so much each day

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CaliforniaCay
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Pickpick

Post 3 of 3. Just finished this one and I loved it. It was just what I needed. Definitely need the print version because there were so many good lines I wanted to underline. This was a personal look at his struggle with depression and anxiety that offered a lot of facts, statistics and quotes. It was helpful withou reading like a cheesy self help book. Very insightful. Thanks again @TrishB and @JanuarieTimewalker13 for the reccomendation!

TrishB Glad it helped ❤️ it is a good read for those going through it and those supporting them. 11mo
JanuarieTimewalker13 You‘re so welcome!!!😘 11mo
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JackOBotts

This book is important. Haig shares his personal experience with depression, his insights about the disease, historical/scientific context, and his strategies for coping. His honesty and willingness to put his experiences in the public view provide a view of depressions and anxiety that is very real. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

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JackOBotts
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Haig‘s writing is honest; it is true; it is important.

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Kateri
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Books are possibilities. They are escape routes. They give you options when you have none.

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LitDrivenGirl
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I hope it is okay to "cross pollinate" a post from my Instagram (aka promote it too). I'm hosting a giveaway over there with my sister's ( @biblio_ginger ) business for one of my favorite 2018 reads and one of her BEAUTIFUL one-of-a-kind bookmarks. Check out the post and see how to win ?. My Instagram is @LitDrivenGirl too!

AmyG Thank you! 12mo
LitDrivenGirl @AmyG thank you 😊!!! 12mo
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Christinak
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Pickpick

Reading this was like a balm to the soul.
It is a very quick read and I highly recommend it.

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JackOBotts
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Literally in my hands: my most recent Goodreads giveaway win! 🤗 Has solid reviews; I‘m looking forward to hearing his story.

Slajaunie I have never won any from Goodreads. 12mo
JackOBotts @Slajaunie whenever I get a giveaway email from them, I enter! I‘ve gotten lucky the past year and won 2 (of who knows how many!). 🤞🏼 for you that you get selected soon! 🍀 12mo
Slajaunie Thanks! 12mo
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JackOBotts
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Happy New Year to me. Looking forward to reading this memoir in 2019.

LauraBeth 💃💃 13mo
Bookladylinda Yay!!!!! 13mo
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LaLecture
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Pickpick

After I posted 9 quotes from this book you might‘ve guessed it - I loved it 😄. It was actually a reread and I still think Haig has so many important things to say. The book give a great insight in how a person suffering from depression might feel. It also makes a good point about the unjust stigma against mental health issues that is still very present in our society. And, most importantly, it shows you that you‘re not alone ❤️.

julesG Bought it the other day. Haven't read it yet. I feel like, when I do, I cannot go back to reading it for the first time. Weird! 13mo
LaLecture @julesG Well that‘s certainly true :D. But you will also have read a wonderful book for the first time :). Looking forward to hearing what you think about it. 13mo
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LaLecture

”@ AlRedboots
The hole you‘d leave is bigger than the pain you suffer by being #reasonstostayalive

Can‘t decide if this is encouraging or really sad 🤔

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Moray_Reads
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Pickpick

I feel like I can only review this through adjectives and feelings and that feels right so here are a few:
Brave. Honest. Insightful. Wise. Consoling. Relatable. Helpful. Funny. Compassionate. Kind. Openhearted. Heartbreaking. Heart-healing (why isn't this a word?)

Ddzmini I wish more of this was passed around instead of negative thoughts, videos of bullying, and fighting. This world would be such a better beautiful place with this type of social media 🙏😋😊🙃🙂 14mo
valeriegeary 💙💚💛 14mo
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LaLecture

Depression is also...
smaller than you.
Always, it is smaller than you, even when it feels vast. It operates within you, you do not operate within it. It may be a dark cloud passing across the sky, but - if that is the metaphor - you are the sky.
You were there before it. And the cloud can‘t exist without the sky but the sky can exist without the cloud. (p. 175)

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LaLecture

I‘m not talking about all that What Doesn‘t Kill You Makes You Stronger stuff. No. That‘s simply not true. What doesn‘t kill you very often makes you weaker. What doesn‘t kill you can leave you limping for the rest of your days. What doesn‘t kill you can make you scared to leave your house, or even your bedroom, and have you trembling, or mumbling incoherently, [...] wishing you could return to the time before the thing that didn‘t kill you. (126)

LaLecture Not the most positive quote from the book 😄 but I agree with him that “What doesn‘t kill you makes you stronger” is not a helpful thing to say, especially not to someone suffering from depression. 14mo
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Jazz2
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Reggie I read The Humans by him this year and it was sooo good. Welcome to Litsy!!! Hope you like it here. 14mo
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LaLecture

Where possible, don‘t make the depressive feel weirder than they already feel. Three days on the sofa? Haven‘t opened the curtains? Crying over difficult decisions like which pair of socks to wear? So what. No biggie. There is no standard normal. Normal is subjective. There are seven billion versions of normal on this planet. (p. 121)

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LaLecture

If, as Schopenhauer said, “we forfeit three-fourths of ourselves in order to be like other people”, then love - at its best - is a way to reclaim those lost parts of ourselves. That freedom we lost somewhere quite early in childhood. Maybe love is just about finding the person you can be your weird self with. (p. 116)

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LaLecture

Minds have their own weather system. You are in a hurricane. Hurricanes run out of energy eventually. Hold on. [...]

Nothing lasts for ever. This pain won‘t last. The pain tells you it will last. Pain lies. Ignore it. Pain is a debt paid off with time.

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LaLecture

Things you think during your first panic attack
1. I am going to die. [...]
8. No one has felt his way before. Ever. In the whole of human history. [...]
10. I will never get over this.

Things you think during your 1000th panic attack [...]
2. I‘ve been here before. [...]
5. I‘m not going to die. [...]
10. I will get over this.

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LaLecture

A brain is not a toaster. It is complex. It may only weigh a little over a kilo, but it is a kilo that contains a whole lifetime of memories.
[...] It is - like all else - made out of atoms which themselves came into being in stars millions of years ago. Yet more is known about those faraway stars than the processes of our brain, the one item in the whole universe that can think about, well, the universe. [S. 73]

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BekaReid
Pickpick

Excellent book that I appreciated tremendously with Matt Haig's open discussion of his struggles with depression and anxiety. Definitely recommend!

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BekaReid
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"I stared at myself in the mirror. I stared at my face until it was not my face."

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BekaReid
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"There is this idea that you either read to escape or you read to find yourself. I don't really see the difference. We find ourselves through the process of escaping. It is not where we are, but where we want to go"

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mkinney10
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"To be calm becomes a kind of revolutionary act. To me happy with our own nonupgraded existence. To be comfortable with our messy, human selves, would not be good for business."

Reviewsbylola I just finished this one last night! 1y
mkinney10 @Reviewsbylola I finished just now! What did you think? 1y
Reviewsbylola I was bored at times. I expected it to be more of a memoir. But I also found it very useful and easy to read and relate to. 1y
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Reviewsbylola
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Pickpick

Matt Haig lays it all bare as far as the depressive breakdown he suffered 14 years ago, and the depression and anxiety he has suffered from ever since.

I could relate because I also have an anxiety and panic disorder. Currently one of my medications is on backorder, which means I had to stop taking it cold turkey. Im doing pretty well and I‘m taking joy in the little things, like Starbucks holiday drinks!

#booked2018 #mcwithinvisibleillness

TrishB Sending hugs 😘 this book was also really helpful to me as I have someone very close who suffers from depression and anxiety. 1y
Reviewsbylola Thanks @TrishB ❤️❤️ 1y
MicheleinPhilly Backorder??? What kind of nonsense is that??? 1y
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Reviewsbylola I know. It‘s really frustrating because wtf are people supposed to do?? Now my pharmacy is saying that the medication is blocked on the manufacturer‘s website so they can‘t even order it. And the medication is buspirone, which is probably pretty often prescribed, I would think. @MicheleinPhilly 1y
Smrloomis Wow, sorry to hear that. Hope they get it back in soon 😣 1y
MicheleinPhilly That‘s bizarre. Can you call another pharmacy and maybe transfer your prescription temporarily? 1y
Reviewsbylola I‘ve talked to my doctor about it but unfortunately all the other pharmacies in the area have the same problem. If they happen to have some in stock, it‘s already allocated to others. Luckily my doctor is very communicative and has a back up plan if I need it. @MicheleinPhilly 1y
LeahBergen Back ordered?? That‘s awful! It‘s not one of the meds that give you bad side effects if you stop taking it abruptly, is it? I suffer from anxiety, too. 1y
Reviewsbylola I‘m not sure. I‘m on day 3 and I feel good, although I‘ve had some bad times on days 1&2 towards the end of the day. I‘ve only been on this medication two months which that may be a good thing. I know you‘re not supposed to stop SSRIs cold turkey but buspirone/buspar seems like an odd animal. It‘s different than any SSRI I‘ve ever taken before so maybe it‘s easier to go off of? @LeahBergen 1y
LeahBergen Oh, well that‘s good at least. Stopping the usual SSRIs cold turkey is horrendous (silly me, I tried it 😬). Here‘s hoping you continue to feel okay! 😘😘 1y
Reviewsbylola 😢😢😢 I‘ve heard horrible things! You must have felt awful. @LeahBergen 1y
Jas16 Omg. I am so sorry. That is absolutely ridiculous. 1y
JennyM You take care lovely. Such a fantastic book, and one I most definitely could relate to when the anxiety is high. Xxx😘 1y
Cinfhen I love your positive attitude - I‘m sure having a wonderful supportive family helps!!! And there is a joy in Starbucks holiday drinks xx 1y
Mdargusch Those Starbucks drinks sure do make my day better too. Especially when I get that free red cup! Hang in there. 😘 1y
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dariazeoli
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To everyone having this human experience ❤️

#WorldMentalHealthDay

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Arkrayder
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Pickpick

This was definitely a brilliant book to read. Coping with depression and anxiety has been part of my life for the last two years and it‘s great to finally read a book that describes how it feels to have these thoughts and fears running through ones head. It‘s an honest account of someone who masterfully describes what it‘s like for depression suffers. And excellent, heartfelt, read.

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April2
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Allietaylor16
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Pickpick

I absolutely loved this. I‘ve struggled with mental health since I was 16, and I completely connected with this book. Thank you, Matt.

Reviewsbylola This sounds really scary but important. I‘ve never suffered from depression but from debilitating anxiety. 1y
Allietaylor16 @Reviewsbylola Definitely important. I found myself nodding so many times. It‘s part memoir/part tips on how to manage it. I really loved it. 1y
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April2
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Ali-Reads
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I love this

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LitDrivenGirl
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"Read Emily Dickinson. Read Graham Greene. Read Italo Calvino. Read Maya Angelou. Read anything you want. Just read. Books are possibilities. They are Escape Routes. They give you options when you have none. Each one can be a home for an uprooted mind."
I'm home from seeing the newest Purge movie with my sister & decided I couldn't wait another minute to show off the bag I designed for our #24in48 retreat. Inspired by Matt Haig's brilliant book!?

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LaraReads
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“Help me if you can, I'm feeling down
And I do appreciate you being 'round
Help me get my feet back on the ground
Won't you please, please help me?”

#help #heyjune

LaraReads So much sadness in the world right now. This was all this prompt brought to mind. Please, please ask for HELP! 1-800-273-8255 National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 2y
vkois88 💔 2y
Cinfhen So important! Thank you for posting & sharing 💜 2y
GypsyKat Good choice! 💙 And beautiful picture! 😍 2y
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MissAnthrope
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I hate depression. I am scared of it. Terrified, in fact. But at the same time, it has made me who I am. And if – for me – it is the price of feeling life, it‘s a price always worth paying. I am satisfied just to be.

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hgrimes
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My embarrassingly precious cat next to the two books I‘ve finished during my sick week. #catsoflitsy

Viji What is your cat‘s name? 2y
hgrimes @Viji Hufflefluff! 2y
LiteraryinLititz Sorry you were sick, but it looks like you had good company! 😉 (edited) 2y
hgrimes @LiteraryinLititz Y‘know...after some very stressful weeks at work, I‘ve kind of enjoyed being home sick on the couch with the kitties for a few days! Finally starting to feel better today, both physically and mentally. ☺️ 2y
37 likes4 comments