Girl in the Dark is Lyndsey's trance-like memoir of her rare medical condition and her life. A 20-something, she was working in an office one day when she noticed that her computer monitor brightness was hurting her. The condition progressed over the course of weeks to become sunlight, lamp light, dim light, and then all night entirely. There's photosensitivity and then there's Anna Lyndsey. Her career is put on hold, her pending marriage becomes a huge question mark, and the need for complete dark becomes an all-consuming goal. Lyndsey's life is reduced to blacking out an upstairs room in her home and staying there for days and days and days. You know those prison shows where solitary confinement in The Hole makes people go mad? That's her world, except
|The view from Anna's room.|
(Yes, it's just a black box)
In the book, Lyndsey lyrically describes her condition and also her attempts to find others like her, to find help that doesn't include a doctor saying something clueless like "just come down to the hospital and we'll examine you" when she can't go outside her room, to find ways to keep from going insane. There's not a sense of time in the book because there is no time when you don't have sun and moon, day and night. She can't see a clock. Clocks require light to read. Oh, and she can't read. She listens to audiobooks. She longs for visitors and dreads the awkwardness of visits. She plays games in her head to keep from cracking. If "The Yellow Wallpaper" were set in a moodier locale, it might be Girl in the Dark.
|If you were stuck in pitch black for|
days on end, wouldn't you start to
worry that you'd end up looking like
this? Just me? Okay.