Breaking and Mending

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Profile Books Limited, Sep 26, 2019 - Women psychiatrists - 162 pages
"A few years ago, I found myself in A&E. I had never felt so ill. I was mentally and physically broken. So fractured, I hadn't eaten properly or slept well, or even changed my expression for months. I sat in a cubicle, behind paper-thin curtains and I shook with the effort of not crying. I was an inch away from defeat... but I knew I had to carry on. Because I wasn't the patient. I was the doctor." In this powerful memoir, Joanna Cannon tells her story as a junior doctor in visceral, heart-rending snapshots. We walk with her through the wards, facing extraordinary and daunting moments: from attending her first post-mortem, sitting with a patient through their final moments, to learning the power of a well- or badly chosen word. These moments, and the small sustaining acts of kindness and connection that punctuate hospital life, teach her that emotional care and mental health can be just as critical as restoring a heartbeat. In a profession where weakness remains a taboo, this moving, beautifully written book brings to life the vivid, human stories of doctors and patients - and shows us why we need to take better care of those who care for us.

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About the author (2019)

Joanna Cannon is the bestselling author of The Trouble with Goats and Sheep, which was published in 15 countries, and sold over 250,000 copies in the UK alone. Jo's love of narrative had always drawn her to psychiatry, but it wasn't until her thirties that she decided to go back to university to study medicine. Before specialising in psychiatry, she rotated through a series of hospital jobs, from the chaos of A&E to the handkerchief quiet of palliative care.

Wellcome Collection is a free museum and library that aims to challenge how we think and feel about health. Inspired by the medical objects and curiosities collected by Henry Wellcome, it connects science, medicine, life and art. Wellcome Collection exhibitions, events and books explore a diverse range of subjects, including consciousness, forensic medicine, emotions, sexology, identity and death. wellcomecollection.org

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