Prairie Halfway House

“Home” is too extreme a word to use for this temporary abode, but it has served its purpose, preparing us for our future home in so many ways.

One of the ways has been E learning about food principles and preparation, something her background never provided.  She has pretty much taught herself to bake wonderful breads of all kinds, such as these sage buttermilk biscuits from scratch, which she served with an herbed mushroom gravy.  Her country southern-style breakfasts are far superior to anything you can find around here.  It’s one of the skills she’ll be able to expand upon in our new home.

I think one of the biggest lessons of being detained here for me has been learning to make the most of the limited resources we have, and taking even less for granted.  Finding myself to be a very low-income older person in an extremely unfriendly conservative state has been not only a wakeup call, but it’s been useful practice and preparation for what’s sure to be even more challenging in our new home.  I’m normally pretty resourceful when it comes to stretching and repurposing things, but attitudes and assumptions from my previous life have been more stubborn and resistant to change.  This midwest interlude has really put me through a reprogramming process.

For E, after a lifetime of grueling work starting at a young age, and extreme personal loss with no support, it’s been a challenge to learn how to rest, relax, and catch up on pastimes that seemed like luxuries before.  She’s just discovering all the basics we take for granted, like reading, movies, music, cooking, clothing, you name it.  She’s finding it’s okay to not be at everyone else’s beck and call, and to finally get enough sleep.

It’s taken a while to distance herself from the financial damage caused by others in her past, and to restore credit and savings toward qualifying for a home loan, especially with our decreasing income.  If we hadn’t met and pooled our resources, neither of us would probably have made it going forward in this merciless political state of affairs.  The delay here has allowed us to recover and take care of essential business.

That’s just a fraction of the metamorphosis we’ve undergone here in our prairie halfway house.  There have been adjustments and adaptations too numerous to name.  At times we’ve felt frustrated and powerless against the forces stacked against us.  We never get complacent, knowing the next setback could come at any time.  It keeps us on edge, but also prepared with contingency plans.  If only all the streamlining extended to our figures as well!  But the forced idleness, and feeling like caged animals surrounded by predators, have taken their toll on our physiques.  Right this moment I’m further constrained by an extreme backache, providing another excuse to avoid the Infernal Device (elliptical)!  One more reason we look forward to our own yard, minus the gun-toting psychobillies.




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