Though I’ve always enjoyed reading and being wrapped up in a new universe, there are few books which I could realistically credit with changing my life. The other day, someone asked me what my favourite book was and, at first, I couldn't choose. Then I went back through my memory and thought of the books I have a tendency to go back to the most, often in my darkest times. These books, which are individual and yet have a similar intrinsic message are my crutch and I very much recommend reading them. They are filled with beautiful prose and brilliant life advice - these authors, all female, have seen me through the most difficult times in my life and whenever I read and re-read these books, I never feel alone. Here is the first of those books…
How to be a Grown Up by Daisy Buchanan
It is an incredibly rare and beautiful thing when you find a book which you relate to on a deep and personal level. Daisy Buchanan has managed to write that book which I think just about every woman can relate to.
As a young woman in her twenties, I often feel like a failure- whether I just feel like i’m not doing enough or i’m actually failing at a job or just life in general. It is often the case that everyone around you feels like they too are failing but simply pretend that everything is going splendidly because they assume that you are doing better.
Daisy’s book has acted as an emotional crutch during a time when I thought I would just break into a million little pieces at any second, this book held me together. I have it on Audible and I have (proudly) listened to it at least 10 times and perhaps more.
I remember when I listened to it the first time, it made me laugh and cry and consistently nod my head in perceived recognition of my feelings. Finally, someone understood me and I wasn’t alone. I went back to this book whenever my life was coming apart at the seams which was, unfortunately, quite often.
I lived in the UK for a year and I think I must have spent at least a solid three months crying (not consecutively thank god). I got fired from my job and cried and walked through Brighton feeling worse for wear and completely morose - I genuinely felt low and like I completely lacked value. I was sure that nobody would ever hire me again and that it was inevitable that i’d be forced to be a disappointment not just to myself but also to my parents who would, undoubtedly, have to look after me for the rest of my miserable life. My flat in Brighton was large, cold and lonely - I couldn’t get the heating or the water heating to work for the entire duration of my stay there - it was, I felt both a failure and a disaster. The flat was too expensive and did my low emotional state no good. What I didn’t know while I was in the UK was that I actually had bipolar disorder but that’s a story for another day….
Through all of my tears and headache, one thing kept me going and that was listening to Daisy Buchanans book. When I woke up with a panic attack a few nights ago, I knew where to go and that was directly to Audble and the comfort of ‘How to be a Grown Up’ For me listening to or reading this book is like falling into the arms of loved one after a particularly long and difficult day. It’s easy to find refuge in the pages of this book and know that you are not alone.