Tea bags, Soap, Be normal (the brain injury/depression memoir) blurb

The book starts in early 2010 and I wake up in hospital with 11 broken ribs, a punctured lung and liver, a broken foot and collar bone and a very serious brain injury. I have to learn how to do EVERYTHING again but because I am “suffering” from euphoria I find it all (the grumpy old stroke victims, the catheter, the gorgeous bottom wiping nurses) strangely hilarious.

And to top things off my memory is broken too and I have no idea why and how I got there … and nobody else seems to know either. Or maybe they do and they’re just not telling me.

As I piece things together all sorts of dark secrets emerge. A past of unrequited love, discovering the piano, a lost album of pain and recovery … I slowly remember the other way my brain has been broken and how it has blackened my life but shaped me as a man and an artist.

Out of the hospital and staying with my long suffering parents, I continue my recovery and am struck by the wonders and simplicities of life anew. The sky, not spilling a cup of tea, the trees in the wind, learning how to swim again, all seem incredible to me in my euphoric state. As I put the final pieces of the jigsaw together (what exactly happened with Ruth and what was the nature of the “accident”?) I realise something else.

I have been given an incredible second chance and I am not going to waste it.

A funny, conversational, moving and poetic memoir about the pitfalls and brilliance of the human brain and how, sometimes, being broken is our only salvation.

“To be born, you have to come from a pretty dark place.”

One thought on “Tea bags, Soap, Be normal (the brain injury/depression memoir) blurb

  1. Hi Dave (Toby Durrant’s mum here!)

    I don’t know if you have checked out eastgrinsteadonline.com yet – it is the town’s first community news site and has been going now for six weeks.

    It is non- profit but overseen by me (I am as you probably know a retired journalist, and author) with a great deal of help from Barney (wot knows about sport!) and some support from some really great volunteer photographers.

    I decided the Courier is such rubbish that really the town deserved better coverage – and since no-one else stepped up to the mark I realised that I’d have to do it myself – hyperlocal being the buzz word on the net.

    We are aiming at content which is news but also has a softer edge with some – I hope – interesting features with lovely photographs.

    And although I spend no more than a couple of hours a day on it I have to say we recurrently knocking the Courier into a cocked hat! See yesterday’s “world” exclusive – a little tongue in cheek but I had sent Ba up there and no-one – not even people with phones – took pictures.

    Anyway the reason I am writing to you – as an ex Sackville boy – is that I have enjoyed your posts about getting back to health and your new Arts Council project and wondered if you would right a first person piece for us – we’d need a pic too…

    Let me know – mahon68@aol.com

    Meanwhile I do wish you the very best – I’m not terribly mobile myself at the moment after a catatrophic collapse of my left knee – but at least that gives me every excuse to sit at the computer.



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