Today’s interview features Author Brandi Kennedy, a writer, blogger, and fellow trauma-mama. Her courage and tenacity shine through everything she writes, and I’m sure equally through everything she does, even when she doesn’t recognize it herself. I am honored to share her story here on Betty’s Battleground.
Before I get to the interview, I want to invite you to leave links to your posts and articles about depression and/or suicide in my current link-up. Off-Fridays converts to a blogger-built resource library once it closes, and this topic is really important, so I hope you will help make it as comprehensive as possible. Cover the topic from all angles! Click here to get to the instructions page, and then click through to the drop page, or if you’re familiar with Off-Fridays, go to the drop page right from here.
Now, I invite you to learn more about what life is like for parents living with PTSD in this interview with author Brandi Kennedy.
Even if you’ve never read American Gods by Neil Gaiman, you have probably at least heard the title. Maybe you’ve seen the new hit show on Starz. I haven’t, because I don’t have cable, and even while I was visiting my in-laws who do have cable, I didn’t get to see it because their package didn’t include Starz. Ah, well.
Though I haven’t seen the show, and though I do believe the hype and greatly look forward to it becoming available via my local library or Netflix, I know, without watching a minute of it, that it does not compare to the book. I know this because the novel American Gods by Neil Gaiman, who may be a god himself, is the greatest book ever written.
If that sounds extreme to you, then you’ve definitely never read it. Look, OK, everyone has their favorites. For a long time, my favorite book was 100 Years Of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. For an even longer time, I couldn’t pick a favorite book because there are just so many amazing books in this world. I still adore 100 Years Of Solitude, and I still believe there are countless worthy books on this planet. But I have also crowned American Gods as the best. At least in my literary pantheon.
The week before last, I posted the Fiction Fridays finale. For those new to this blog, Fiction Fridays was a series in which I posted original short stories that I had written. I closed the series, but that doesn’t mean fiction is not still an integral part of my trauma recovery. Fiction has been a bright point in my life as long as I can remember. When I was a child it was the light by which I viewed the world; since acquiring PTSD it has become the guiding beacon which I use to stumble out from this dark purgatory. Without fiction, this blog would not exist.
People have asked me how I am able to dive back into some of my most painful memories in order to write them out in these posts. Readers have commented on my courage, my bravery; the self-discipline it must take to engage with my trauma in such an honest and public manner. The answer to anything related to trauma is never something that can be summed up in a simple one word response…but ‘fiction’ has definitely been a major catalyst in my recovery. If I had not first explored my trauma through creative fiction, I would not be able to write about it in non-fiction narratives. Had I not first placed the lens of fiction between these events and myself, I would not be able to view them so thoroughly through the direct lens of truth. Fiction has allotted me a safe setting to explore feelings, events, and characters which would have been too triggering to visit in other contexts. It has reduced my symptoms. It has saved my life. Today, I want to share this tool with you.