There are a handful of books that I've read that leave me in a weird state when I'm finished: equal parts awe, inspired, ready to act, and like there is a void now that it's over that can't possibly be filled with any other book. These are the books I return to again and again to flip through and revisit. To curl up with like a dear friend.
This I Know: Notes on Unraveling the Heart by Susannah Conway is one of those books.
I've had this book sitting on my shelf for almost a year. Not because I didn't want to read it, rather because every time I picked it up, it felt important. It felt like I needed to be in the right headspace. I could tell it wasn't a book I wanted to dabble in. I wanted to sink in wholeheartedly.
Finally I knew it was time to pick it up, and I am so glad I did. This book is amazing. It's beautiful. It knocks on the doors of your heart, mind, and soul to see if you're paying attention to life. It makes you question if you really understand who, where, and why you are and if you are being gentle with yourself.
Chapter after chapter, through prose bordering on poetic, Susannah discusses grief, family, solitude, body image, and so many other things she had to understand in order to move forward in her life.
Sprinkled throughout her writing are her photographs - muted and compelling - telling their own version of her story.
I've been drawn to Susannah's work through her blog (including her Unraveling course which was fantastic!) and when I read This I Know, it became clear why her work resonates with me. In it she said,
I prefer to be the one behind the curtain, tapping away at my keys, walking through town with my camera, recording the ordinary magic I see.
Ordinary magic. Yes. All of her work oozes with ordinary magic. I love that.
I gave This I Know five stars on Goodreads (that's out of five possible stars, so you know I mean business). So yeah, put this on your to-read list.