I asked Jan at Conari Press if she was still interested in seeing another book from me. She was, so it was a big day to send it all off to her. There are so many emotions engendered when you send a book off: some level of uncertainty; some level of confidence. Then the big question, always a good one in my case, Will other people see the worth and work that I've put forth and lived? We'll see. It's good to be this far along. We wait.
Turns out, I can't live without a book going. I took four days off, we're talking restless hee-bee jee-bees here, started another. This one is about a pistol-packing mama and a librarian. Good, huh?
Now Chrysalis. That's a group of homes in our community that provide help and assistance to women newly out of prison, most often women with substance abuse issues. There is no tougher road. Their treatment program based on Christian values and teaching, which incorporates absolute truth-telling, discipline and direction, learning who you are in God, getting a grip, besides the psychological and social learning and support, and the science of addiction and what it requires to set yourself free. There are lots of women who do not make it; the consequences are dire. One gal burned out her liver before the age of 30. But there are a few sterling gals who do, and they are making their way into our congregation. They make up two rows in our more raucous services. They have been embraced at our church and we are getting to know them. Viv wanted to know what I wanted to do. I thought about it for a weekend and decided I could come and do a home-cooked meal, teach some basic cooking skills, empower those gals so that they could learn how to provide healthy food for themselves. I have a theory for everything, which is the way my writer's mind works and here's this one: if you had an addictive process going on in our life, and you were hungry, lonely, lost, that would be bad juju and you would be more likely to be out finding the things that weren't good for you. Men who would use you sexually. Drugs and alcohol. Breaking the law. Finding money from those sources. Tough.
But if you had some power over your own life, could provide food and the other things you needed in this life through your own efforts, you might stand a better chance. I could teach them about good food and how to make it. My friend, Jeanette, wants to help too. She's one of the best cooks I know; she's an ardent vegetarian and her food is a salute to great health. Viv and I were thinking that more women might want to help. Let me know. I'm going to do it quarterly, I'm thinking, so there's lots of room for help. Think about it: a whole cadre of mamas at the ready. Men too, I'm hoping.
And last, Rick and Suzie are in town. He's running this weekend in a big race, about seven hours of biking, swimming, and running. There are some friends who are beyond fit, but Rick might be the bes and he's in his early 60s. Impressive, impressive, impressive. We had dinner with them last night in Tim and Julie's back yard along with my cousin Julie, Cheryl and Larry, and baby Bear, the new puppy. Way fun.