Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson
Rating: 3 out of 5
Awards: Audie Award for Humor (2016), Goodreads Choice Award Nominee for Humor (2015)
Thoughts: This book is about Jenny’s mental illness and how she copes with it on a day to day basis. Or that’s what I thought. But it’s a lot of rambling and a lot of unrelated nonsensical stuff. In a chapter on her sleep disorders, she goes on and on about her pet squirrel for more than 20 mins before coming back to the actual topic at hand. It seems mildly amusing at first but then a whole book with chapters like this is bit too much to take. There is a whole section on what happens when you name your cat ‘The President’. It’s filled with passages like these
Do they call a crib a “crèche” because it sounds like “crotch” and babies come from crotches. If so, it seems very lazy, but it’s nice that they put an accent in it because it adds a desperately needed touch of elegance.
And then there are also hear-felt passages like these.
When you come out of the grips of a depression there is an incredible relief, but not one you feel allowed to celebrate. Instead, the feeling of victory is replaced with anxiety that it will happen again, and with shame and vulnerability when you see how your illness affected your family, your work, everything left untouched while you struggled to survive. We come back to life thinner, paler, weaker … but as survivors. Survivors who don’t get pats on the back from coworkers who congratulate them on making it. Survivors who wake to more work than before because their friends and family are exhausted from helping them fight a battle they may not even understand. I hope to one day see a sea of people all wearing silver ribbons as a sign that they understand the secret battle, and as a celebration of the victories made each day as we individually pull ourselves up out of our foxholes to see our scars heal, and to remember what the sun looks like.
She has anxiety disorder, sleep issues, mental disorders including depression along with a few other things. She does talk about them but not in any detail.
This book is not without it’s positives though. I liked reading about her relationship with Victor. If he can listen to her ramble and tolerate or sometimes even enjoy the crazy stuff she does, she is one lucky woman. I’m sure they are both lucky to have found each other. This book is okay in small doses. Sometimes I thought she was romanticising her disorders but who am I say to say how she should deal with her disorders. Last 2 hours of the book were surprisingly very good. I related to a few things she said and enjoyed listening to her quite a bit.
I listened to the audiobook which was narrated by the author herself. Her voice is warm and has a certain endearing quality to it. I’m not sure I would have finished a physical copy of the book.
You know sometimes you don’t really like a book but it still leaves a lasting impression on you? This is one of those books. I do recommend taking a chance on it. I might just go and read her previous book as well.