This review is part of a blog tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions.
Excuse Me, My Brains have Stepped Out is an epistolary novel written from the point of view of Anya, a woman seeking solace from her estranged father. It is never made clear where he went or why, but Anya writes regularly to him, expressing her fears and frustrations about her illness and a world of which she struggles to make sense.
Although the story lacks a cohesive structure and seems to ramble at times, it does contain gems of wisdom hidden through the rough. Being seriously ill when I read this (actually requiring my husband to read the majority of it to me), I couldn’t help but relate to much of Anya’s turmoil, although I do believe the story could have been much richer if the author had taken the time to step back and write from a less angry, more balanced perspective.
Anya Michaels is having the time of her life. She has the man of her dreams by her side. She has graduated at the top of her class. She has the job others were lining up for. Between late night drinks at her favourite bar and fancy dinners at the most expensive restaurants, she has a string of adoring friends. Everything changes when she hears the dreaded words, "You are sick."
Being diagnosed with a rare neurological disorder, her world starts to fall apart, one piece at a time. Now dumped, her four year relationship is nothing but a memory filled with pictures, thoughts and a very broken heart. Her job becomes an even further challenge as she tries to hide her condition. Her friends suddenly have more important things to do, what is a party without a party girl? Perfect could not crumble any faster.
Soon, caught between situations, people and pieces of life that she never dreamed of planning for herself, Anya begins to wonder if her brain condition is all that bad. As she absorbs the changes in her life and realization sets in, she begins to wonder if she is the only one saying: Excuse Me, My Brains Have Stepped Out.
(20% of royalties will be donated to the National Organisation of Rare Disorders)
On another occasion, when I felt I could grab brain surgery by the horns, he has gently pointed out to me, ‘Sweetheart, it is a bit naive to think that you can bounce back just like that two weeks after brain surgery when people with broken legs take longer to heal, isn’t it?’ I won’t be jumping for joy every time I hear a ‘no’ from him but I also realise that he understands me enough to have a grasp of my limitations and when to reel me in from fantasy land.
There is only so much you can control in your own life, let alone someone else’s. Let it go. We are different for a reason. I think it is important to remember that we are individuals who have fallen in love, whose peculiar differences will make for a more interesting journey. After all, you can either be a pea or a carrot. You just cannot be both. Or in the spirit of one of the most memorable lines ever, ‘You complete me’ simply be the other half.
And there you have it, Dad. Obviously we have lots more to learn, loads more to laugh about and tons more for our journey. And no, I cannot make any guarantee that this will be a journey with blue skies, sunshine and flower strewn pathways. I am certain we will have our autumn days and winter moments. There will be minor irritations on days when I write ‘cake’ and he reads ‘biscuits’ or when he goes out to do something he will call fun and I will scream recklessness.
There will be many days and ways, boys will be boys. But there will also be those numerous, uncountable moments, when he will be a man, hold me close, give me kisses of hope and show me why him, me and ‘us’ are all worth fighting for.
International best-selling author, Pandora Poikilos has been writing for more than 10 years for various media which include newspapers, radio, television and various websites.
You can read more about Pandora Poikilos and her works at her blog and website, or connect with her through Twitter or Facebook.
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