Psst! If you’re looking for the new Literary Medicine Cabinet that I’ve expanded from a simple printable to a beautiful 35-page ebook, go here to check it out!
When life is crazy, do you reach for certain titles on your bookshelves? I definitely do.
During the year that we sold our house and moved from Florida to Texas so we could live on a farm and Daniel could switch careers and start a livestock internship, I struggled to read anything new. But I did re-read all of L.M. Montgomery’s Anne books, Jane Austen’s complete works, and the entire Harry Potter series.
Those are some of my comfort books–part of my self-care. They make me feel safe, happy, and sane even when life is throwing me for a loop and is full of upheaval.
But then just a few weeks ago, a lovely gal named Vanessa in our Fountains of Carrots podcast Facebook group (which is, by the way, the only thing keeping me on Facebook because it’s full of such delightful people) used the perfect words to describe comfort reads. In a thread about Little Women, she asked “what else is in your literary medicine cabinet?” and I fell hard for that phrase.
I’d heard of “bibliotherapy” before–healing (often from trauma) through reading, but Literary Medicine Cabinet hits the nail on the head for how I’ve come to find comfort in books and have them nourish me in times of crisis. I could name a dozen or so books that would certainly be in my LMC right off the top of my head, but I kept thinking on it and came up with well over 100 titles!
I compiled a list of those books that make up my Literary Medicine Cabinet, broken up into sections (classics, children’s literature, spiritual reading, etc), and made it a printable so you can easily take it to the library or make an Amazon order. I also included a section with spaces for you to fill in with titles that make up YOUR Literary Medicine Cabinet so you can curate your own.
While some of what I included in my list (like Little Women) may be comfort reading for many of us, there are certain books we may read as children or during special seasons in our lives that become comfort reads whether they’re heartwarming or not. The Violent Bear It Away is one of these books for me, even though it’s not exactly ahem…..lighthearted…with all the murder and such.
I would love to hear what you would put in your Literary Medicine Cabinet in the comments!