So, when weighing the choice between ECT or DOA, the decision is easy to make. Not only because of my daughter and the rest of my family and friends, but for my formerly high-functioning self. In the end the choice couldn't have been easier to make. Electricity as opposed to game over. I decided to ride the lightning instead of extinguishing the light of life that had once shone out of my eyes. I keep my wick lit for my daughter, Billie, for my mother, my brother—for my entire family—and for each friend I've made with both hands, one heart, two moods, and a head crammed with memory. Memory I must now reacquaint myself with.

Perhaps now is as good a time as any to share with you the message that currently greets all callers on my answering machine, crafted by my friend Garrett:

“Hello and welcome to Carrie's voice mail. Due to recent electroconvulsive therapy, please pay close attention to the following options. Leave your name, number, and a brief history as to how Carrie knows you, and she’ll get back to you if this jogs what's left of her memory. Thank you for calling and have a great day.”

Each night I do a show where I entertain with tales of my dysfunction. I've done the same show dozens of times in an assortment of cities, yet somehow—depending on the audience—it's always a little different. Adding myself to the dearth of damaged celebrities that seem compelled to share their tales of their time spent circling the drain.

Wishful Drinking—both the show and the book—chronicles my all too eventful and by necessity amusing, Leia-laden life. I tell this story, partly as a means to reclaim whatever I can of my former life. What hasn't been eaten by electroconvulsive therapy—and partly because I heard someone once say that we’re only as sick as our secrets.

If that's true, then this book will go a long way to rendering me amazingly well.
Excerpted from WISHFUL DRINKING by Carrie Fisher. Copyright© 2008 by Carrie Fisher. Reprinted by permission of Simon & Schuster, Inc., NY.


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