Day 12 – A book you used to love but don’t anymore
I used to only read psychology reference and nonfiction books. I also read books about the Beatles, but "read" sounds misleading. I absorbed everything that had anything to do with the Beatles when I was sixteen. I was going pretty nuts. The coincidental emphasis on the study of psychology is neither here nor there. I loved Lying: a Metaphorical Memoir by Lauren Slater. The form of it still thrills me: it is about the author growing up with epilepsy that she lies about and exacerbates until she is operated on unnecessarily. Slater hints in the preface that epilepsy itself is a metaphor for something else. The evocation of her auras is powerful and I can still remember vividly the beginning of the book. It devolves at the end into her trysting with someone at Bread Loaf. When I went to reread it last year I was pretty appalled at how trite the prose was. I'm still grateful for having the book when I did, though. I used to have seizures. They happened at night. I still wake up with my mouth chewed out sometimes. Slater provided some much-needed compassion and, crucially, imparted the first vital I-can-do-better.