A (Small) Bookish Catch Up

Today we are going to catch up. And by catch up I mean I am going to talk about Chris Cleave’s Everyone Brave is Forgiven which I loved more than I have loved anything for a long long time and also Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children which I should have read a long time ago and which freaked me the hell out and the new book by Jennifer Niven which I have mixed feelings about. Get comfortable lovelies.

I love Chris Cleave. Or at least I loved the only other book of his I’ve read (The Other Hand) so I was super excited to get my hands on a copy of Everyone Brave, and the proof is so pretty too, all black cover and red pages and my copy has a signature. Lush.
It’s a really really beautiful book on the inside too this one, it doesn’t just look good, it tastes good too, I’m not even kidding: ‘…a galaxy of seeds that crackled in his mouth like bereaved punctuation.´ well, just seduce me with your pretty words why don’t you Mr. Cleave.
And it’s such an incredible story. It’s set in WWII and follows young socialite Mary, determined to make a difference, Zachary a little boy who can’t be evacuated because he’s black  and nobody wants him and art restorer Alistair who finds himself in the army and it hurts and it’s wonderful and it’s witty and hurty and so freaking smart. It’s just….it’s kind of mind-blowingly good, this epic novel full of love and war and loss and bravery.

In which I am thankful for my peepers.

So it's been a pretty rough two weeks really, which if you follow my Twitter and/or Instagram (or know me away from the internet) you probably already know because I am ashamed to say I have been wallowing in a sea of self pity expressed mostly via social media. I know. I've been That Person. And I'm sorry.

It's been a scary time though. I've had eye problems like I've never known before. A corneal ulcer - or ulcerative acanthamoeba keratitis if you wanna be fancy; I got the eye doc to tell me that yesterday  - which was actually just the physical manifestation of a really nasty eye infection that started on my cornea and worked its way inside my eye. I know, right?
It hurt like a bitch (seriously I never knew my eyes could hurt like that) and my vision was really messed up (is still pretty shit truth be told) and everything was rubbish and for a few days there I was genuinely terrified I was going to lose the sight in my right eye. Genuinely terrified. And not just because I was being a DQ either; it was a genuine possibility.
There have been trips to the eye doctor and all manner of tortuous tests and antibiotic eye drops that I had to apply every hour - even through the night, which, well not so much fun at all  - and other drops which paralysed my eye and it's pretty much been a horror from start to finish.

However, I got the all clear yesterday. The infection has gone and the scarring is only at the edge of my iris which is as good as it can be, really and things are so much better, I just have to wait (and hope!) my vision rights itself over the next few days and I am so relieved, you have no idea.
And the whole thing has just made me realise how lucky I am you know, not just to have my sight (but oh wow, that. I will never ever take my sight for granted again) but that I have the people in my life that I do. I really am the luckiest: my parents who drove me to appointments and sat in on consultations and loved me and made it so clear that actually you're never too old to need your Mum and Dad; and the not family members, the people who called me multiple times a day just to check in and who talked me down when I was verging on hysteria, who made me laugh when actually I just wanted to cry, who drove me to the pharmacy at 9 in the morning on a Sunday, who drove me to the hospital at 9 in the morning on a Wednesday with a one year old in tow, and sat in the waiting room and didn't cry, who took me for brunch and pub lunch and pretty much kept me going, who listened and talked and rationalised and text and who figuratively 'stroked my hair and told me I was pretty.'

I am SO lucky. So lucky. I have amazing people in my life and I haven't lost my sight and actually, my life is pretty damn good and I am so grateful. So very grateful.

I guess my point is be grateful for the little things, appreciate the people that are there for you - even when times are hard and you're not at your best. Especially then - and look after your eyes. Please look after your eyes. And for the love of all that is good, don't sleep in your contacts because corneal ulcers suck.