I’ve been asked how I got to the other side, how I went from head in a bottle in bed to joy. It’s lots of stuff, but here’s the book list so far.

1. I Thought It Was Just Me (but it isn’t) Telling the Truth about Perfectionism, Inadequacy and Power Brene Brown, Ph.D., L.M.S.W.

I heard Brene at Blissdom and bought two books from her. This book talks about how shame isolates us and makes things worse on everyone and how empathy is always the right answer. It’s a pretty academic read, I think she’s a fabulous speaker – so you may want to check out the TED site or search the net for some of her audio/video presentations before trying this one.

2. Part of The Power of Positive Thinking by Norman Vincent Peale

My mom mentioned Guideposts, I went to the site, I found this. Basically, check in with God/Your gut to see if what you want is the right thing, if yes, then create the picture in your mind and go out and get it.

3. Healing Parents – Helping Wounded Children Learn to Trust & Love by Michael Orlans and Terry M. Levy

I  know. You are saying, uh, parenting book? Well. The Dude comes from a fucking fucked up dynamic and there were some similarities between him and the adopted child of a friend. So she recommended this book. I read parts of the book and found things in there that really drove home the work I needed to do with Alex.

4. The DNA of Relationships by Dr. Gary Smalley

Recommended by David B. who can’t keep it in his office because people always take it to read it. Best of the book – protect yourself, respect yourself, “The No Losers Rule”. It gives actual “here, try this communication tip” as opposed to “open communication with your partner”. It’s a really easy read, and I’d tell you more details about it, but CarrieTini absconded with it to Arizona. 🙂 It’s a lot of Christian based stuff – which for me is fine, but I really wish they would write a secular version of it as well – I think the information in there won’t get to some people because they will be turned off by the “Jesus Stuff” Which sucks because, damn, this book is good.

5. The Shack Wm. Paul Young

As my friend David B. put it, “I think God is up there going FUCK YEAH! someone GOT IT!” It explains God and the Trinity in a way that made sense to me. This is the book that taught me the forgiveness lessons. It’s a work of fiction, much in the same vein as The daVinci Code is – as far as an author taking facts/beliefs and building a story around them. David B. told me about it, I ran across it at the grocery store and bought it, CarrieTini mentioned it that same night – apparently this book wanted me to read it.

6. Secrets about life every woman should know – ten principles for total emotional and spiritual fulfillment by Barbara DeAngelis Ph.D.

This is a gift from CarrieTini – the gist – “I Choose Joy” “Grow Little Butterfly Grow” (There’s more to it of course, but it’s one of those that we have had to read in small doses, chew on, discuss, read some more. I’m still chewing.)

On the bookshelf

The Gifts of Imperfection – Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are Brene Brown, Ph.D., L.M.S.W. – The other book I bought after hearing her speak at Blissdom

Hold me tight: seven conversations for a lifetime of love – Sue Johnson – rec by CarrieTini’s therapist.

Mother-Daughter Wisdom by Christiane Northrup, M.D. – love other stuff she’s written, figure this is another I’ve always meant to read.