Tuesday, March 15, 2011

An Unquiet Mind (by Kay Redfield Jamison)

I found this book in the Church library, I guess having my classroom in the same room as where the library was (they shifted it to a booth in the social hall), can be a little distracting(:

But this book, An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness was definitely not what I expected to read. Although this is mostly cause it's a book borrowed from the Church library and yet has nothing to do with Christianity. But also because this book is a memoir of Bi-Polar Disorder, from the perspective of a doctor who has it.

I have read of Bi-polar, referred to as Manic-Depressive (but I'll just say Bi-polar because it's shorter and I'm a lazy person), and I remember reading it in a fiction book. But reading someone's experience it is totally different. While it's actually very hard to identify with her life (which is more or less the opposite of mine), she does a good job of painting a picture of how she tried to cope with her illness and its consequences. One thing I remember being touched by was how her big brother takes care of her; but I do wish that she talked more about her relationship with her sister.

The book isn't filled with medical jargon (which is a plus), and I think that being a doctor, she also has an 'insider' perspective on how Bi-Polar is dealt with. Her struggles are convincingly real, and I came away with a greater understanding of what it means to be Bi-Polar.

There are actually very few criticisms with the book, except that perhaps it was a little repetitive for me, although I understand that it's what happened to her. I have seen some criticism on amazon.com, calling her spoilt, but I didn't feel that tone, but rather, I quite admire her for learning to live with (and even gain a tenure) her Bi-Polar Disorder.

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