The past few days have been filled with a lot of laughs, but also a lot of struggles. One of my housemates, Paul, has decided to leave Philadelphia in pursuit of more accurately fulfilling God's will for him at this time. He is planning to depart at the end of the month, but it's been a tough week trying to deal with that and still cater to our community as a whole. I'll keep you all posted on that! We're all trying to be supportive of him and his decision, despite the fact that we're going to miss him lots.
Every Thursday one of the female FVMs gets to go to Thea Women's Center, a day-center/residence for women recovering from addiction. It houses 3 women typically (there are currently 2 there) and women can come all throughout the day for some rest, a meal, and "group," a time when they can all share their stories and their struggles with others who are facing similar issues.
I was blessed to be part of such a personal experience for these ladies and really had a great time hanging out with Jan and Monique (among the others who just "dropped in"). Jan, who was wearing pajamas and slippers, showed me around their house and shared with me some of her story. She was addicted to drugs for awhile then cleaned herself up for about 13 years. Back in March she was undergoing surgery and used cocaine as a way to alleviate the pain from her surgery and fell back into her old habits. This time, however, Jan quickly recognized the need to enter into a treatment program so that she could help herself to be a better mother to her two kids, ages 16 and 18. While I was there, Jan received a call from her son who was upset because his father kicked him out of the house. She said that he's been having a hard time lately and used to use drugs but doesn't any longer. She fears that his father will drive him to use drugs again and was torn apart because she wanted to be there to help her son. She knows that she needs to get better herself before she can help her son, but I guess that's just what it's like to be a mom.
I also hung out with Monique... I don't know that there's too much to say about her except she's crazy! She's lots of fun and really loud and outgoing, but is also very quick to offer advice to the other women. I really liked hanging out with her! Please say a prayer for her because she is going to visit her 7 week old son, Victor, today, the first time she's seen him in a month!
I was on pickups today and had lots of fun driving around the city! I'm starting to understand the layout a little more and am having more confidence in my ability to drive the big van (Cappy, as it is called).
Since I'm sitting outside pirating this wireless internet from our next door neighbors and the sky looks like it's about to open up, I guess I'll end here! Thanks again for your continued support and prayers! And if you get the chance, please come down and experience Philadelphia for yourself! I'd love to see you!