While awaiting my surgery to remove endometriosis, a million thoughts spun around my head every day. I was worried about the dangers of surgery and on top of that, I was pretty confined to my home and a chair because of my pain. For as long as I can remember the best way to distract myself from worry was exercise. I know that sounds like the classic remedy for everything these days, but for me, it just came naturally and it really worked. And of course, writing – but if you read the last post you’ll know I had a terrible case of writers block during this time.
In college, when I’d get into an argument with a friend or fail a test I would lace up my blue Asics, put in my headphones and listen to something like Alicia Keys “Girl on Fire”, and hit the ground sprinting. I’d be so focused on the lyrics in the music that I’d come up with some fake story in my head, like I was running to save someones life, and just think about that and let the exhilarating feeling overcome me.
But once my endometriosis got really painful, running and most forms of exercise stopped. I would try to get active, but I really couldn’t bear it anymore. Luckily I did find something to save me from all my worries, and that is a new found love for reading.
The first book to truly win me over was recommended by a friend. It was Before I Go To Sleep by S.J. Watson. I remember reading the first chapter and being totally psyched about how good it was. I called my friend and said something along the lines of this: “OMG this book! It’s SO GOOD. I can’t even put it down. Isn’t that CRAZY??”
She laughed and half heartedly said, “Yeahhh, it’s really good.” I could tell in her voice she thought I was losing my mind. Honestly, it was as if I had never read a book before that point. This book constantly kept me wondering what would happen next. And when I wasn’t reading it, all I could think about was the next time I could. Once I finished it I was on the hunt for the next mystery novel.
Reading great books got me through the toughest times. Instead of having just one escape, endometriosis kind of helped me find another. Hopefully I can use them both one day.
My top 5 must-reads:
Before I Go To Sleep by S.J. Watson
Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher (If you’re looking to hit your record time for finishing a book, trust me, this is the one to do with it.)
In The Woods by Tana French (the entire series is amazing)
The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapenã