Current Book Selection and Meeting Time
Hi Book Clubbies:
We conducted our first ever NAMI Hunterdon Virtual Book Club last night (using ZOOM) and to my delight it worked. We have scheduled our next meeting date for July 9, 7:00 PM. This most likely will be another virtual event. It’s incredibly easy for all who want to join. I will send to you 9several days prior to the appointed date) a ZOOM invitation with a link. In order to join you simply click the link and follow the prompts. I believe you may need to download the ZOOM app but all that is required is the free basic plan.
Our book selection is Hidden Valley Road: Inside the Mind of an American Family by Robert Kolker. FYI: This is an Oprah Book Club selection and there is a lot of wonderful commentary online to enhance your experience reading this provocative story.
Below is the link to the PBS film that I mentioned at our Book Club discussion (thanks to Laurie who brought it to my attention). I highly recommend seeing it. It is a very well constructed and thoughtful documentary on the current situation with our American Mental Health Care system. Many of the scenes will be painfully familiar to too many of us. They’ll no doubt provoke sadness and anger. Just remember knowledge is power.
This is a separate link to Fountain House which we also talked about at our Book Club Meeting. Fountain House is an impressive organization, very inspiring. There is a lot of information about their model, etc. on their website. I encourage you to go ahead and take some time to learn about them.
I hope you are safe and healthy and maintaining connection during this time of social isolation.
Virtual hugs to all, Louise
NAMI Hunterdon Book Club
Date: Thursday, March 12, 2020 | 7:00pm
Location: Panera Restaurant, Flemington
All are welcome – come as you are. For further information Contact Louise Hartman at 609-468-6036 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our book discussions are gentle and kind and explore the problems and possibilities of living with mental illness. We use the lens of the authors whose books we read to inform our discussions. But our group enthusiastically embraces digressions and invites participants to bring their own personal stories into our forum (if they so choose). And sometimes it’s not always possible for members to read the book prior to our meetings. That’s fine, we’re not sticklers on that front (or any front for that matter); we just encourage the free flow of compassion.
We look forward to seeing you!
Life Inside My Mind: 31 Authors Share their Personal Struggles edited by Jessica Burkhart. Simon Pulse, New York, 2018. 309 pp.
Your favorite YA authors including Kami Garcia, Ellen Hopkins, Maureen Johnson, and more recount their own experiences with mental illness in this raw, real, and powerful collection of essays that explores everything from ADD to PTSD.
Quotes from the book:
“You know how depression lies? Well anxiety is stupid. I did not just say people with anxiety are stupid. No, no. I mean that anxiety itself is stupid. If you asked anxiety what two plus two is, anxiety will think very hard and say “triangle” or “a bag of Fritos” or “a commemorative stamp.” Because anxiety doesn’t know what anything is. It will try to convince you that things that are totally fine are worthy of dread.”
― Maureen Johnson, Life Inside My Mind: 31 Authors Share Their Personal Struggles
“Mental illness—having it, advocating for its understanding, living with it—has an image problem. A large part of the problem, I think, is the term itself—illness is something that automatically suggests rot and contagion, a short interim of bodily collapse that must and can be cured as quickly as possible. But the spectrum of mental disorders—which runs from low-grade depression to personality disorders to acute schizophrenia—suggests that this term is far from sufficient.
It is far too restrictive. It suggests two states, and only two states: healthy and sick, well and unwell.
But the truth is many people who live with mental illness are well and sick”
― Lauren Oliver, Life Inside My Mind: 31 Authors Share Their Personal Struggles