“It can, I promise you.”

“Book and reader, if they meet up at the right moment in a person’s life, it can make sparks fly, set you alight, change your life. It can, I promise you.”

I can attest to the truth of this quote from Sophie Divry‘s novella, The Library of Unrequited Love. Indeed, I’m highly qualified to speak on the subject.

11 years or so, a friend of mine thrust a book at me while I was on the toilet (yeah, a close friend, obviously) and ordered, “Read it.” I was ill and had nothing else to read, and seeing how much I enjoy a good fantasy, I decided I’d give it a go. Even though, close or not, this friend of mine and I were known to have differing tastes in books.  I was in need of an escape. Little did I know how far a turn of a page would take me.

Epic adventure… well, if anything, the readers of this book (and book series) ended up out epic-ing the story that brought us together. To make a very long (interesting, yes, but too long for me in my present state of health to write out again in detail – a lot of people already know the story and I have written it at other times and in other places) short, the reading of this one book got me a husband and caused me to move across an ocean.

Now, read that quote again. Is it any wonder that the celebration of World Book Day is pretty personal and important to me? And, not just me either! Because, the thing is, not only did this book bring me and my husband together, but I know of at least 4 or 5 other couples that ended up together because of this self-same series of books (and have stayed together). We are people who fought huge odds, battled masses of immigration red-tape, had to put up with the “well-meaning” frienemies who told us we were being ridiclous, etc. and we stand as testimony to the power of the written word and how far-reaching and impacting a story can have on individual human stories.

Happy World Book Day!

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INDEED! I can promise you that.

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I still have HOPE and a PROMISE

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Last week I made the very hard decision to go back on medication for depression. This was not an easy thing for me to do, because I so detest the side-effects of antidepressants. But, the time had come to either do something or to go to bed and never get back out of it.

Since we cannot afford for me to have a stint in the hospital or for me just to go to bed (we can’t afford for my husband to stay home from work to take the kids to/from school, or to come home from work every single time I have a breakdown and am crying hysterically down the phone), it was necessary to do something.

So, yesterday, I bit the bullet and went to the doctor. I was officially diagnosed with severe depresion (scoring a 24 out of a possible 27 – the higher the score the more severely depressed you are) and was given the prescription.

My attitude to it is this: I know how I am supposed to think, I know what and how I am supposed to think, but my brain will not work that way; it needs some serious help. This is the first step to getting better; this will open the door for me to be able to make myself think the way I should think. This is the first step – on  a journey – to better days.

Yesterday morning, in my quiet time before getting out of bed, I felt God give me this verse of scripture:

Come back to the place of safety, all you prisoners who still have hope! I promise this very day that I will repay two blessings for each of your troubles.Zechariah 9:12 NLT

I am a prisoner of depression. But, I still have hope, and I have God’s Word; His promise of blessing.

No, I’m not happy that I’m on an antidepressant that I know, while it’s helping, will affect me in ways I do NOT want to be affected.  But, I have hope of deliverance, from both the depression and, eventually, the crappy side-effects of the medication I have to take in order for me to cope with my every day life.

Hope is not synonymous with wishing. Real hope is not the same thing as wishful thinking. The difference between hope and wishing is as much as the difference between a dream and a fantasy: the former is inherant with power and possiblility while the latter is just smoke and sandcastles.

I still have hope. And, I have a promise which keeps that hope breathing.