One year ago, my mind in a fog, I asked if I would ever feel “normal” again. My daughter, less than two months old, cried and cried and cried. I walked for hours around Washington Heights, from our home on 175th St, up to Ft. Tryon, back down to the Little Red Light House, and then home again only to start out on another walk. Trying to go back to some semblance of a normal life, I tried to read. I hunted through our bookshelves, searching for a title that caught my eye. I would read a few pages, put it down, and then move on to another. The only book I could read, if you could even call skimming through a paragraph on “typical sleep habits of a 8 week old” reading, was Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child. I missed The New Yorker, I missed cozying up with a book, I missed sitting at a coffee shop, getting lost in a compelling story, postponing a dinner date to finish a chapter (and then thinking, just one more page…).

A year and change out, our Esmé has stopped her crying, and has thankfully become a happy, peaceful (mostly), little girl who loves her literary Cozy Classics, especially War and Peace. Finally, my head feels clear, I am back, in a sense, ready to read, ready to take pictures, ready to create.

Phew. Peace. Clearing. Energy. Sunshine. I’m back.

phoenix by sandara

So now on to what The Literary Man (a.k.a.: The Literary Dad) calls “book porn:” my book queue. I’ve read The Year of Magical Thinking The Department of SpeculationCongratulations, by the Way and Cutting For Stone, all of which have been unspeakably amazing in their own ways. Finally, I’m on a mission to finish the ones I’ve started, but who still sit like half drunk glasses of the finest bourbon on our shelves. I’ve also amassed quite a list of “want to reads,” which also sit proudly amongst my queue.

So a list:

If Only You People Could Follow Directions, The Telling Room, Sous Chef, Invisible Man, Christmas on Jane Street, I Feel Bad About My Neck, Let’s Explore Diabetes With Owls, Five Days at Memorial, The World According to Garp, Americanah, My Struggle, Far From the Tree.

What have I missed in the last year? What books inspired you, changed you, made you miss your dinner date? So happy to be back…send me your thoughts over at @LadyTexasLemon