In a bookstore, I usually start out in the gardening section, or looking at books on small-scale organic farming and permaculture. Or buying books on herbal medicine, or coveting interesting beautiful cookbooks, or adventure travel memoirs. And of course there’s the life sciences section: natural history and ecology, brain science . . . . .
Here, in this blog-world, I’m noticing those are not the blogs that I gravitate toward so much. Rather, I’m gravitating toward blogs by folks who are struggling with emotional and mental health issues, and I find that interesting.
I struggled with depression when I was younger. I never hurt myself, but I did reach a point where I could not carry on a full conversation (after saying “hello” I just wanted to find an empty room, because that was about all I could remember how to say to another person), where I could barely perform the tasks I needed to in a job or in school (and even though I never lost a job, I knew how little I was doing, how little I was able to do). I still can have anxiety that impacts my level of functioning and my human interactions.
I still sometimes feel like I am trying to make my way out of that place. Or that I still have a deep fear about going back into the darkest regions of depression. Although there are a lot of people who have experienced depression, I have not found so many who understand/have experienced the deeper/darker depressions. So I suspect that the potential for interaction with those who have had (or who are having) similar experiences is a major influence in what I read here.