What I am watching
When season 1 of 13 Reasons Why dropped on Netflix last year I wasn’t interested in watching it at all. Let’s face it, it has been a LONG time since I was in High School, and little by little, year after year, movies or shows that depict teenagers’ lives are less and less relevant nor interesting to me. Then on a talk show one of the actors that portrays a parent of these kids started explaining how important the show was and how the parents were also part of the story, hence I figured I’d watch the first episode and then see what’s what.
The show pulls you in immediately and it talks about so many subjects that are so taboo (bullying, rape, invasion of privacy, suicide and so much more) and it’s so well done that I watched the entire first season in a couple of weeks. I could relate to Hannah, I felt for her mom, and I knew kids like Bryce and Alex and Clay in High School myself. Interestingly enough, I could not relate to many of the parents. I don’t know why. Then my then 13 year old middle schooler saw me watching the show he told me “Oh no, mom, not you too”. When I asked him what he meant by that he reiterated that all the girls at his school were watching it and talked about it endlessly and all told him they thought he looked like Clay. “Clay, huh?” I replied. “You know Clay is the good guy, right?”. “Oh”. I insisted he watched it too, and he did and loved it. Watched 4 episodes back to back on our drive back from Phoenix last fall.
So, when season 2 dropped, I knew I would watch it as soon as I could. Last night I watched the final 2 episodes and… wow. They managed to take it one step further and add another taboo subject: guns. While I do think season 1 was better, I still liked it. I do find it interesting how they incorporated many of the elements of season 1, such as the retro cassettes are now retro polaroids and managed to get Hannah involved by making Clay tormented by her ghost. The whole trial was slow, and one could not help but feel the show dragging from time to time. Overall, a thumbs up is earned. I wonder what season 3 will bring?
It probably comes to no surprise that I am a fan of genealogy. I wrote about my obsession in a couple of past blogs, such as this one “Aren’t we ALL cousins?” and “Ancestral Discoveries” among others. The thing I love about “Who Do You Think You Are” the most is that not only they find names, places and dates, but they discuss the lives of the ancestors they find and their place in history. By doing so they help their descendants understand who they are and where they are from, which can be extremely valuable in understanding ourselves and our place in society and in our family. I know for a fact that giving my son the notion that some of his great-great-great-uncles died at Gettysburg, made the Civil War real to him. He also sat with us while we watched a mini-series about the Mayflower, knowing that 3 of the people portrayed were his 11th great-grandfathers. Bringing history to life is but one of the many things we can learn from our ancestors. And if the only thing we learn is that our lives are so much easier in comparison, well, that’s no small feat.
What I am Reading
This is another show that I didn’t watch right away. Yet again one of the actors appeared on one of the talk shows I watch (The Talk maybe?) and it intrigued me. Since the very first episode depicted a stillbirth, I was hooked immediately as I spent the rest of the show in a lake of tears. What can I say? It is what it is.
Emotions are the main ingredient of “This is us” and the character of Kate was an immediate draw. I loved her, was shocked by her size, adored the relationship with her brothers and wanted to learn more about her life. I am not sure a character like hers has ever been portrayed, so when I heard that the actress, Chrissy Metz, wrote a book that described her challenges in a raw way and how inspirational it was, I immediately picked it up.
This book is enjoyable to read and well written. It’s very humorous along the way and there’s a lot of wisdom to it. It’s also a self-help book in a way, as Chrissy gives personal tips on how to love yourself. I am only about a third of the way through, but what I read so far is funny, heartbreaking, heartwarming and every emotion you can imagine in between. A must read for everyone that is in need of a little boost to their self-esteem. Five Stars!
Courtney had a similar shock when her daughter Brenna was born that I did when my son Nicky was. We were both slammed with a devastating diagnosis. Her daughter’s skin disorder is called “Harlequin Ichthyosis”.
I first became aware of Ichthyosis when I took Nicky to Camp Wonder in late June 2003. Camp Wonder is a camp for children with skin disorders, and while many kids there had EB like Nicky, I noticed quite a few had very red, flaky skin, something I had never seen. I asked what condition that was and they were kind enough to illuminate me.
What is ichthyosis?
Ichthyosis is a genetic skin disorder characterized by dry, scaling skin that may be thickened or very thin. The prefix “ichthy” is taken from the Greek root for the word fish. A recent study has determined that approximately 300 babies are born each year with a moderate to severe form of ichthyosis. Ichthyosis affects people of all ages, races and gender. The disease usually presents at birth, or within the first year, and continues to affect the patient throughout their lifetime.
As a mom who wrote a book about her son’s life with a rare disorder, this kind of book is a “must” read for me.
Love & Light,