Hurray! A whole day (Covid card and mask required) devoted to a workshop at Jenna’s Promise. I haven’t been to a full gathering in, well, about two years. The workshop was about the future of recovery in the Green Mountain State.

One of the key speakers lifted a blue vase. Her daughter, now passed away from an overdose, had brought home the vase from India. The vase had broken in her luggage on the return flight, and it had sat on a shelf in pieces. The speaker raised the vase and explained how her grandson had suggested they repair the vase with super glue. Together, they mended the beautiful vessel.

The thing about this audience — the recovery crowd — is that the rose-colored glasses have long since shattered for everyone in the room. Any wet eyes are likely to be from tears — from sorrow or laughter — either is likely. Hardly any rational human would disagree that the pandemic broke our world where it was already ailing. While I’ve long since relinquished any belief in magic, I do know the power of super glue. And I do know what’s broken can sometimes be repaired.

(And, I heard the inimitable Johann Hari read….)

April. Spring. Robins mudding those fat-walled nests.

“It isn’t the drug that causes the harmful behavior—it’s the environment. An isolated rat will almost always become a junkie. A rat with a good life almost never will, no matter how many drugs you make available to him…. Addiction is an adaptation. It’s not you—it’s the cage you live in.” 

— Johann Hari, Chasing the Scream

8 thoughts on “Promise.

      • I’m carrying it all around the U.S. at the moment. : ) It’s a fantastic book. I feel like I’m right there with you in Vermont. I live in a small town in the South that has also been ravaged by opioids, and now meth and fentanyl. Your book is a must-read for anyone involved with the “system” handling the problem. I haven’t finished it yet but THANK YOU for writing it!

        • Hi Shawna,

          Thank you so much for writing this. Unstitched was a really difficult book to write. This country has been so devastated, in so many places, by opioids. I’m always interested to hear from people in other places. You can email me directly if you’d like:

          Very best,

          • Brett, of three boys who were friends in middle-class Orlando, Fl, only my son is still alive. Both of his friends went to rehab multiple times and still ended up overdosing. And this is before the advent of fentanyl.
            (I will reach out to you via email when I’m home.)

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