Christmas is going to be different in 2020 but as a 2nd wave of coronavirus recedes and we enter a new tier system, one of the first things you notice is how much earlier people have been putting up their decorations. It’s been a horrible year for so many and for those who believe the pandemic was a huge Government conspiracy, take time to consider the 60,000 unnecessary deaths that occurred in the UK alone and what it feels like for millions of mourners across the globe who lost loved ones. So whatever we can do to inject a little cheer and love into this world, we should embrace it.
With a vaccine around the corner, finally there is hope. This must come as a great comfort to those who are shielding, such as the elderly but with Christmas around the corner we need to be there for each other like never before.
For the past two months I have been editing my book like crazy and love how it’s all coming together. I struggled with the first half for over a year but during the first lockdown, it finally began to take shape. I am days from finishing it now, and about to write the epilogue, before handing it over to an editor.
But in my last post, I also pledged to include a tribute to Graham Lovell, a local resident whose stories gave me much inspiration. I am pleased to say last weekend I wrote that tribute, a process that evoked heartache, more so when I saw Dan’s tribute on YouTube, snapshots of a friendship which lasted 23 years. It is a beautiful film and very moving, it captures the person Graham was, so I hope he won’t mind me sharing it.
With the impact the pandemic has had on mental health, it seems ever more important to recognise it. It can strike at any time, sometimes with devastating consequences. Anxiety, depression, insomnia, paranoia and panic attacks are things I have known in my own life and I feel blessed to have conquered them, through mindful practices such as positive thinking, keeping busy, creative hobbies (especially writing) and have the support of my loving husband and family.
There are people in our world who carry terrible sadness inside, but it is not always obvious until it is too late; a reason to keep in touch with each other, especially in these strange times. We might not be able to meet face to face, but we can still call each other, network on social media, Face time or zoom. Yes, it feels a bit weird and there was a time when I couldn’t imagine life would ever get back to normal, but at least there is hope. I would like think we will come out of this a more compassionate species and that somewhere, at the end of a very dark tunnel, a glimmer of light shines at the end.
Stories that tackle mental health issues
To end the year, I’d like to include some favourite books and as an avid reader have ploughed through some excellent novels but I especially want to concentrate on those that tackle mental health issues.
The Faerie Tree by Jane Cable
Deals with family bereavement, self-blame, depression and guilt.
Beast by Matt Wesolvski
Deals with the exploitation of vulnerable people with complex metal health issues
Spare Room by Dreda Say Mitchell
Tenant Lisa finds a hidden suicide note. The story is who wrote it and why?
I Found You by Lisa Jewell
A man is discovered sat on a remote beach in a fugue state. Deals with trauma.
The Secret by KL Slater
A story of how the burden of adult conflict and secrets can affect a child.
HAVE A VERY HAPPY CHRISTMAS.
SEE YOU IN 2021 WHERE HOPEFULLY I WILL BE PUBLISHING NEWS OF MY FIRST PSYCHOLOGICAL THRILLER.