Please refer above to the image which depicts a cat scratching at the face of a woman with buttons for eyes. Yes, those are beetles dropping from her clothing and hair. Yes, this picture should be a bit shocking, considering it comes from a children’s colouring book.
This image is of the “Other Mother” from the book Coraline, of course. It’s one of many fascinating drawings by Jill Thompson in The Neil Gaiman Coloring Book. Where the images in this book may disturb others, they calm me; they have provided me with leisure, distraction, and a sense of variety at the end of my long days of teaching and study. However much I adore my job and the children I teach, and however much I am stimulated by the literature I study, my brain is in desperate need of a break by evening.
If the drawing of a woman getting her button-eyes ripped out by a cat is the only thing that gives me the intellectual rest I need, so be it. I won’t question, I won’t complain. I’ll just focus on colouring the Other Mother as treacherously as possible, the ghouls from The Graveyard Book as mischievously as possible, and — most importantly — Coraline’s rain coat and boots as brilliantly yellow as can be.
Take a break, take rests, take care of yourself. Keep on living.