I am currently revising the 1st edition of my memoir, Saturation. I have created a new blog where I will share portions of the updated version. My new goal is to republish the book by end of 2022. You will find snippets of the 2nd edition here: https://wordpress.com/view/buildwithwords.com
I am also editing a short story I wrote entitled Cat and Caterpillar on that same blog. In case you’re interested, you can follow the development of both.
The following is a much appreciated review of my memoir by Kathleen Higgins-Anderson, Browns Mills, NJ – New Jersey, United States
My Book Review:
Saturation is a memoir written by Jennifer Place, documenting her very real odyssey of battling alcoholism, dysfunctional family relationships, a toxic marriage to an enabler, and her journey towards self-discovery and sobriety.
This was not an easy story to read, but I admire the realistic, no holds barred, straight talking account that Ms. Place uses to tell her story. As a non-drinker that has had alcoholism affect both sides of my family, Jennifer’s account of her bout with alcoholism and struggle to gain sobriety horrified me, I went through a roller coaster ride of emotions as she described her daily drinking habit of four bottles of wine, and the occasional doses of vodka, I just couldn’t imagine how the hell she lived to tell her story. I totally got what the title Saturation stands for, she saturated herself with alcohol on a daily basis to get through the withdrawals, and to be able to go about her daily life. My heart breaks for everyone who goes through this on a daily basis, and it just cemented in my mind how horrible a disease alcoholism really is.
Jennifer’s struggle to overcome alcoholism was coupled with the dysfunctional relationship that she had with her family, and the toxic marriage to an enabler that she basically hated. Can you just imagine the hell that she was living? In her memoir, she feels that she was a terrible mother, who gave her two sons to their fathers to raise, and she writes that she felt guilt ridden for doing this. I do not agree that she was a bad mother, Jennifer, I applaud you for being a mother who cared enough to allow your sons to grow up in stable home environments, and your greatest gift is that they are both well-adjusted young men. The other thing that I would like to comment on is the family dynamic. While I can understand the author’s dysfunctional relationship with her father, I would be remiss if I didn’t say that from a family member’s standpoint, who had to deal with an alcoholic father’s verbal abuse, family members feel helpless as they watch their loved ones go through this terrible disease, and any attempt to help are often met with resistance and verbal attacks which we endure because through all of this, the simple fact is that we love our family member no matter what. As for the toxic short-lived marriage, I am so glad that Jennifer finally took a stand and put that behind her. As long as there is an enabler in the relationship, a person’s constant struggle with alcoholism would take precedence over gaining sobriety and maintaining it.
Jennifer’s account of the five times that she went through in-patient treatment, and her struggle to maintain sobriety only to relapse each time, demonstrated the reality of alcoholism as an ongoing struggle that a person endures in order to achieve sobriety and maintain it. As I read about each of the five times she was in treatment, I cheered for her, hoping that she would find herself and gain that sobriety. My heart broke each time she relapsed, and when her journey towards sobriety was finally achieved, I rejoiced over the strength that she displayed to finally be able to put that traumatic part of her life behind her.
I would recommend reading Saturation, whether you are addicted to alcohol, or have a loved one that is addicted, as it may provide a sense of reality and hope that alcohol addiction can be overcome and sobriety gained.
I welcome feedback, comments and questions. You can reach me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org