I have just finished reading a newly published book by a woman from Maple Ridge, and I found it so well done and interesting.
I think readers will enjoy it especially during this time of coronavirus restrictions impacting everyone’s lives.
“You know the dream that you hold in hold in your heart forever, and are kind of afraid that it won’t ever come true? Well, you’re holding mine.”
That’s how Kali (pronounced Kay-Lee) Desautels – married in her late 30s and living in Maple Ridge with husband, Dave, daughter, Shaeli, and son, Liam – introduces her just published book How not to Blog, Finding Myself One Post at A Time.
The book is a compilation of blogs posted online over three years, under the title KaliDesautelsReads.
It’s available in soft cover from Amazon.ca books – and if you are a mom, a wife, a husband, grandparentm or great grandparent, it is a worthwhile read for its insights into the issues most of us face on a daily basis.
As the jacket blurb explains, Kali has worked through depression, anxiety, marriage, an ongoing obsession with books and “a rather hippie-dippy style” of parenting.
Her writing style makes it easy to read and provides wise comments on such topics as mental health, feminism, coping with illnesses, and being a mother.
A few examples that caught my attention: After describing cuddling in bed to comfort her young son for an extended period one night, she wrote:
“I am gathering these moments and imprinting them on my memory, hoping that they will stay here, so that 35 years from now I’ll be lying in my bed and will be able to pull this out, dust it off, and be with the seven-year-old who needed his Mama in the middle of the night.”
One chapter is titled: I might be a weird Mom… but I’m your Mom.
“If my kids learn anything from their weird mom, I want them to know that they can be themselves and that they need to speak their truths and they need to stand up for their beliefs,” she writes.
Kali writes of different reactions to physical and mental illnesses. In the former, you might avoid her to keep yourself from getting sick until she recovers; in the latter you might be avoiding “the irritation of my ‘whining’, but I will continue to get sicker.”
“Depression lives in a vacuum. Isolation makes it worse…” She asks what might you have done to discourage thoughts of suicide? “Most of all maybe you could have tried to feel more comfortable with my anxiety than you are with my vomiting.”
In comments about International Women’s Day, she writes “If the last few years of chaos on this planet have brought anything of value to the world it is the new wave of feminism that is rolling through.
“We are organizing and activating and advocating and marching and suing and standing up and shouting and writing and photographing and supporting and believing and encouraging and dedicating and making and breaking and baring and singing and letting ourselves be seen. We are holding hands with our sisters and are mad as hell… “
She remembers her own personal battles with Hashimoto’s Hypothyroidism and fibromyalgia and the family living through Dave’s colorectoral cancer and its so-far successful treatment, and she takes readers into the COVID-19 pandemic, then lists several things she’s learned in quarantine:
– I still have all four members of my family, safe and sound…
– Texting my friends and family keeps me sane and smiling.
– Dr. Bonnie Henry is the most calming person in the world, even when sharing bad news.
I’m not trying to sell this, simply to give your readers a heads up about the easy reading style and the wisdom contained in this book.
Jim Peacock, Port Coquitlam
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