Mac and cheese, Cabernet, and Vampires

I have officially reached the time of year that (literally) drives me crazy. Every Septemberish for almost as long as I can remember, I’ve started to unbalance. The degree of unbalance varies greatly, but if you looked back at my mental health log, you’d see that September is almost always when I start going to therapy again (I generally drop out in December or January because I still haven’t found a therapist I actually like).

It’s the month in which I stop sleeping, start getting more and more anxious, and basically hate everything about everything I’ve done. I get weepy (and I am not a weepy person) and depressed and my social issues are through the roof. Case in point: The architect and I were to go to the art museum Friday night – sans Bean and everything – but there were people there for some kind of event that I didn’t know about, so I made him drive on by and then we just had a martini instead. (The reason we were going to an art museum was because we’d originally been hosting a game night, and I couldn’t…people at my house…so I canceled that. WHY ARE THERE SO MANY PEOPLE?)

Dramatic reenactment of Friday night's martini

Dramatic reenactment of Friday night’s martini

This year, I decided to be pro-active! I will deal with things before September! I went to a (‘nother new) shrink just as I was switching jobs at the end of June. I was already super duper anxious then – mostly due to old job – and had another appointment at the end of July where I was pleased to report that I was feeling much better (a month at new job really helped). At that point, I was fine so made a third appointment for next week. Last week, the anxiety started spiking and the eye sockets started randomly leaking. I started having panic attacks again. I’d only had one in the previous 7 weeks (correlating perfectly to job switch).

I canceled social events that would require me to be…social. I stopped sleeping more than a scant few hours each night. I started craving comfort.

In the last week, I’ve made mac and cheese, mashed potatoes, chocolate chip cookies, meatloaf, and drinking red wine – something I don’t usually drink during the summer.

I also start re-reading. I have two entire bookshelf of “comfort books” – one next to my bed and one on my iPad. These are the books that comfort my mind the way a glass of Cab or a bowl of mac and cheese comforts my body.

So, you (are probably not) asking – what’s on these shelves?

I’m so glad you asked!

A selection from the real deal shelves

  1. Harry Potter
  2. Hobbit & LOTR
  3. Tam Lin
  4. The Talisman
  5. Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
  6. The Yellow Wallpaper (which maybe shouldn’t be on my ‘read while depressed’ shelf)
  7. The Wrinkle in Time series
  8. A smattering of Poe, Shakespeare, Austen, Robbins, Pratchett, and Atwood, and various and sundry other things

A selection from my virtual shelves (this is much more skewed towards paranormal content). (I really do have a virtual bookshelf labeled ‘comfort books.’)

  1. Mercy Thompson Series (Patricia Briggs)
  2. Kate Daniels series (Ilona Andrews)
  3. Walker Papers (Urban Shaman series) (CE Murphy)
  4. Iron Druid Chronicles (Kevin Murphy)
  5. Riley Jenson Guardian Series (Keri Arthur)
  6. Knitting in the City series (Penny Reid)
  7. Elemental Mysteries (Elizabeth Hunter)

Currently, I am reading (in addition to the smattering of new stuffs and work stuffs):

On my iPad (Kindle app):

I've been devouring this series again. Damn but that Hunter woman can write.

I’ve been devouring this series again. Damn but that Hunter woman can write.


With my ears (hooray for Audible!):

I spend a lot of time saying, "Ugh, Mary..." right now.

I spend a lot of time saying, “Ugh, Mary…” right now.

And the paperback:

This never gets old. This cover was the inspiration for my latest tattoo.

This never gets old. This cover was the inspiration for my latest tattoo.


And now it’s September, so I just have to get through this month. And I will. I always do. But please don’t hold it against me if I start to hibernate a bit.

What are your comfort reads?

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