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How I Manage to Read so Many Books While Struggling with Depression and Mania

Olive and Bones= Summer 2016

A symptom of experiencing mania is making impulsive decisions and acting on risky behavior such as meaningless sex with a random whoever, self harm, substance abuse and spending money you can’t afford to spend.

I buy books.

I try not to but it’s far beyond my control. On the list of possible impulsiveness or self destruction I think I scored in the area of irrational behavior. I’m not merely justifying it. Really, it’s true.

Yes, I have enough books I haven’t read yet to last until I’m 90 years old. Yes, There’s a public library .08 miles from my house. Yes, I check out more books than I can read at one time each time I go. I’m fairly certain the library did not consider it to be feeding into a negative behavior when they set the limit at borrowing 45 items at one time.

To be honest, I do have an awareness and tell myself all the time I’m not purchasing another book. Of course I can walk into the bookshop and leave empty handed.

No. No, I can’t.

I know this is going to sound paranoid but I’m being targeted. For instance this showed up in my email inbox.

I recently (as in five days ago) purchased ten of these titles and only ten because I have already read the other six.

Next I’ll be purchasing the Fifty State Collection Set unless I can find someone to intervene my crisis. Again, I was targeted.

It’s totally not my fault.

I read three books per week depending on page length. I’m rather impressed with my ability to do so since I have zero time management and organization skills. I do it because knowledge is power and I want to be powerful enough to take over the world.

That’s actually an entirely untrue statement. I prefer napping so I don’t have to deal with anything. Taking over the world would be too much work.

I’m not that motivated.

I’m enchanted by stories, and I’m thirsty to learn. When I’m deep inside the pages of literature I’m off to another place, a new experience or learning a new skill. However, life is busy and I’ve little time for myself. I set goals for the day. More often than not I get derailed. Who doesn’t? Yet, I’m still able to read a lot of books.

This is how I do it:

I’m introverted and somewhat Agoraphobic-
I have no social life and I’m riddled with anxiety to get home if and when I leave the house. This makes finding extra time to read simple.

I have a fireplace-
This is a perfect reason to avoid getting up and instead hunkering down with a good book. With a gallon of coffee in one hand and a turn of the page with the other I feel novelesque.

It snows a lot in Iowa-
Iowa takes deep freeze to an entirely new level. It’s — 20 degrees right now. No joke. It snowed four days this week therefore making it impossible to leave the house and accomplish anything.

I have no clue where my cell phone is right now-
This eliminates distractions. Husband calls? I have no idea. New notifications on Facebook? Whatever. Someone needs me in the event of a disaster? Well, they’re screwed.

I blow off chores-
There’s always tomorrow, right? Technically, I didn’t even make the mess.

I go to the library-
This way no one can bug me. It’s my ‘no interruptions time.’ Find a dark corner. Hide.

(This option doubles as promoting independence within your spouse and teenage children. You know, the ones that didn’t clean up their own mess.)

I read for two hours before bed each night. That’s fourteen hours of reading in itself. It’s more than enough time to read a 500 page book or two 250 page books. There’s also those nights where I suffer from ‘one more page’ syndrome only to later discover it’s now 3:00 AM.

Sleep is overrated, anyway.

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