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Let's Panic: The Book!

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How to Endure and Possibly Triumph Over the Adorable Tyrant
who Will Ruin Your Body, Destroy Your Life, Liquefy Your Brain,
and Finally Turn You
into a Worthwhile
Human Being.

Written by Alice Bradley and Eden Kennedy

Some Books
I'm In...

Sleep Is
For The Weak

Chicago Review Press

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Let's Panic

The site that inspired the book!

At LET'S PANIC ABOUT BABIES, Eden Kennedy and I share our hard-won wisdom and tell you exactly what to think and feel and do, whether you're about to have a baby or already did and don't know what to do with it. → 

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Doctor's orders

I took one of those depression-quiz thingies online today, and out of 45, my score was 42. I win at depression! Which I guess means I lose at life right now.

Right now. I'm stressing that. This day is not so good. Yesterday was bad. Today is even so much worse, like you would not believe. And yet I'm hanging on. No choice in the  matter, after all.

My doctor has prescribed, in addition to an increase in the medication that I am not 100% sure is working in the first place, a complete work stoppage for the next two weeks. No work. That means no blogging, which I argued was not "work," per se, but he argued back that it does in fact tax my already limited mental/emotional reserves, which I can't argue with. It is staggeringly hard to think right now. Plus it's like the keyboard designers TRIED to make it harder for us to type. I have to put so much muscle into it!

In addition to not working, I have been commanded to entertain myself like it's my job, until (please yes soon?) the meds are working. I just finished watching "Eat Pray Love" on Netflix. Julia Roberts has such a veiny face! I found the movie smug (not surprising) but diverting.

So while I won't be updating with much of anything for the next two (2!) weeks, I will be checking in. And if you have any ideas for non-challenging, soothing diversions, I am all eyes. And appreciative (if mis-firing) brain. I love you guys. I kind of mean that, like a lot.

Reader Comments (178)

When I lived in New York and was crazy depressed, I would summon all of my energy (all of it! no showering! cover the important body parts with some kind of cloth and be done with it) and schlep my ass down to Vaselka and eat some damn perogies. They might even deliver. I'd also watch Rachel Maddow for hours and hours on the internet, rock back and forth and repeat "there are good, smart people, there are good, smart people, there are good, smart people."

May 19, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterkarafern

Ha ha you sound like a pampered 50's housewife or some menopausal Vienese matron from 1896. Depression sucks, but who the fuck has the luxury to take a rest cure these days? Good God you sound annoying...I pity your husband!

May 19, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterseth

Wow, Seth, you sound like a pampered idiot frat boy with no fundamental understanding of what mental illness is. Ignorance sucks, but who the fuck has the time to educate themselves? Good God you sound like an asshole. I pity everyone who knows you.

May 20, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterkarafern

Oh Alice! I love your writing very, very much. Please stop watching Julia Roberts movies. That never really works out for anyone.
If you're still streaming Netflix why not check out some Firefly? The whole series is available for streaming and the main guy is cute. There's also Friday Night Lights, which is a drama and can be cathartic. I think you're really going to like Tim Riggins.

This too shall pass.

May 20, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterclaire

As a long-time reader and very rare commenter, I just want to say that you are a lovely person, and we will wait for you until you come out of this. Take your time, take care of yourself, we will be here.

May 20, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLori

This is my first reading your blog as I just came across your site today . Firstly I am sorry you are feeling sad not sure if this is really real stuff or not. My suggestion is for you to join a gym or take dancing lessons . Looks like you have a great support online and I am hoping that you are able to turn things around.

Anyway how accurate was the online test and was it from a reputable source.

May 20, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterorlandoescape

I'm so sorry to hear that you are not feeling well. One suggestion that I have is to watch "Party Down" on Netflix if you haven't already done so.It's definitely laugh outloud funny (if kinda bleak...but I hope not too bleak...) I've also gotten hooked on "Parenthood"; it's completely schmaltzy but the acting is pretty good I'd also take a whole lotta warm bubble baths and eat a fair amount of chocolate. Feel better soon.

May 20, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterEllen

Thanks, Karafern, for Seth's smack down. Good God, the poor asshole can't spell, either.

Alice, take care. As one who is also hounded by "the black dog", I wish you balance ... and the strength it takes to maintain it.

And, if we're giving NetFlix recommendations here, I recommend asking those people whose opinions you value, what their favorite funny movies are and rent those. Find the laugh wherever you can.

May 20, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterFranca Bollo

Play lots of computer solitaire. Oh wait, that's what I do when I get depressed, and it makes me feel worse. Never mind.

May 20, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMJ

Thanks for this, Alice. The fact that you and others like Dooce write openly about this topic helped me realize that I can't control what I've been going through, other than to get myself some help. How 'crazy' is it that despite understanding others depression I haven't accepted mine and how BAD it got over the past two weeks? I'm so so glad you're open about this. I hope you're feeling better. I saw a new and WONDERFUL dr. last week and am finally, finally taking some steps and also surrendering to my need to nap, etc. It's nice to feel some hope that I can actually feel better and enjoy all the wonderful things I have in my life. Here's to your health, too :-).

May 21, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSharon

I'm so sorry...

HAve you watched "Gavin and STacey"? I just did a marathon of all three seasons and loved it. Light and fun and very well written. YOu can stream seasons 1 and 2 on Netflix!

May 21, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

Knit. Make scrap quilts. like to draw and you are quite good at it! Sit on a park bench in the sun with a perfect latte. Read some Stieg Larson Novels. Make freezer jam. Make no knead bread. Dance to Katy Perry, or Lady Gaga (I can't help it! They're so danceable!) Paint your toenails. Go to the museum, your favorite used book store, the library. Read the personals ads in the paper.

I'm sorry for your difficulties right now...I hope it gets better for you soon.

May 22, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMissey

Hang in there, Alice. We're all gunning for you. :) (Something to ponder in your time off: where did that phrase come from?)

May 22, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKerry

As someone who has so been there before, just try to breathe. Only you can figure what that is but don't stop trying to find it.

May 23, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJRM

I'm sorry, depression sucks and its really hard to explain to those who've never been there. They can only see how great you are, and not why you can't see or feel that or the love all around you.
Keep being gentle with yourself. You are a precious thing to all of us, and right now a very fragile one. Know you are loved. Comfort read familiar things, especially kids books. Look to Diamond's blog for suggestions.

May 23, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterChive

go shopping and buy something for yourself !

May 23, 2011 | Unregistered Commentermominrome

This may sound too tween to fix the blasted blues and since I am commenting way late you may not even get this but, my recommendation for clearing the cobwebs is as follows. Bake cookies, watch "All About Eve" and read "The Hunger Games" trilogy. And of course, best of luck. The sads suck but always fizzle out. Feel better.

May 23, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDotty

Oh, the bad as the book.

I thought the book was so self indulgent.

I canNOT get over what people were thrilled over.

I love you, too.

The 2 wk breaks sounds nice. I think I'll do it, too.

May 24, 2011 | Unregistered Commenteralexandraa

I came to comments to suggest Gavin and Stacey, but sarah already did. I second the suggestion! Really. And I really hope you feel better very, very soon.

May 24, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterk

Alice I'm so sorry that you have been dealing with this! Unfortunately I have been there and know how yucky it feels. All I can say is just take each day minute by minute,and let the meds do their thing. Rest, take care of yourself and try and see joy in the small things. It WILL get better. Take care!

May 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDiane


Just wanted to say that you are missed by many. Hope you feel better soon.

May 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJenny

Um. I know this is supposed to be the box where I type something uplifting for you (giggling babies! rainbows! Newt Gingrich's head on a pike!) but, I just wanted to say thanks for posting what I was too afraid to say about my own day. It was a hard one, too. Your honesty gives me courage.

I hope this dark cloud passes over quickly. In the meantime, get thee some Marx Brothers on DVD.

May 25, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLoLo

Okay, time for an update. How are you doing?

May 25, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAmy

Yep give us an update how are you doing any turnarounds

May 25, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterorlandoescape

I haven't read the 7 pages of comments left here so please forgive if this is a repeat.

I love love love going to thrift stores and buying books. For $20 I can find at least 10-15 books that would keep my mind off depressing anxiety inducing thoughts. It also kills at least 2 hours of time depending on how great the selection of the books are.

I really shop on LI for thrifted (YES spellcheck, thrifted IS a word) books but I'm sure you can find some right in your neighborhood.

I excel at things-to-do-to-avoid-life. So hit me up for more suggestions if you like this one!

May 25, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKerewin

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