Tuesday, July 01, 2008

The Purpose of Adversity

So I'm going to visit one of the women that I visit teach tonight. She's currently living in a mental health treatment center, and you have to do the whole shebang in order to get in. Know the patient code. Flash your ID. Take off your belt, empty your pockets, nothing sharp in your hair, no stilettos, etc etc. This particular center also houses adolescent male sex offenders in a separate area. Which naturally flashes me back to my old job, and I remember how incredibly draining it was. I'm so glad not to be there anymore. Anyway, I'm going to give her the lesson that I gave to the Young Women on Sunday, about overcoming adversity. I also emailed the bare bones of that lesson to one of my best friends yesterday, because apparently I am the biggest dork in the universe. But I know that adversity makes us stronger and, more importantly, more compassionate. My friend's baby is in the hospital with a major heart problem right now, and I thought, "I understand. I understand, I understand." I think compassion is one of the greatest emotions on earth.

That said, I signed my contract for the short story yesterday. They get first North American Serial rights and exclusivity for a year, plus the right to use excerpts for promotion if they choose. I get $25 and a contributor's copy, and that's enough for me. I get to pull a book off of the shelf and say, "Do you want to hear a story that Mama wrote?" The thought alone makes me smile.

Niko's limp is absolutely obscene. His left foot turns all of the way out, but he's getting stronger, and I'm grateful for it. I can't tell you how his broken leg threw me! "It was gruesome," Luke said, but it was more than that. I'm prepared for the other things. Heart things and artery things and kidney/calcium/hearing/visual/ things. But I had never built up my reserves for something simply snapping. Now I have thought about it. Now I am prepared. I vow never to be thrown like that again.

Nina is a mama's girl. "Ma ma ma mamamma," she cries, crawling toward me and lifting up her arms. She's so beautiful. She's so fearless and lovable. She was worth everything that happened in order to get her here.

I've been working on a new story lately, and I like it. Apparently it's a novel, because I'm writing it in chapters, but it's unlike anything else that I have ever written. The main character is an incredibly sarcastic woman with...well, we'll call it a special "talent", and the two male leads are her legal assistant brother (Thanks, Birgit! I gave him your job!) and an ex-junkie with bland hair and beautiful eyes. It's writing itself, practically, and it's a pleasure to be along for the ride.

Know what I've been thinking about lately? Forgiveness. Repentance and change. People taking horrible things and somehow making them beautiful. I'm discovering how much I really believe in mankind. It's somewhat of a relief, actually.

5 comments:

Every minute counts.... said...

I am glad things are going well for you.Being able to pull a book off the shelf and say " I wrote that" is an amazing accomplishment!
I myself would like to read your lesson on adversity, it sounds very interesting.
Hoping that Niko has a fast recovery and Nina is always a Mama's girl :)

Noel

Riley said...

your cool. but spiritual.. . it's an odd combination. I'm not sure what I think of it yet ;-)

Laura Oler said...

You write such amazing things.

Janyece said...

I can't wait to read it! Hey, and what a compliment from your brother there...!

Jeff & Ali said...

Congrats on the story Sadie! That is so exciting. You'll have to let us know where we can buy it! Sorry about the tire situation. I love those kinds of days! Glad the kids are doing well. They are getting so big so fast. I wondered how things went on the 4th with the fire works. It sounds like there may be improvement... Hopefully we'll be able to see you soon. Maybe the 24th???