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Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Letters to a Prison Inmate: Part 2

Since the midweek service I referenced in Part 1, I attended a Sunday worship service. That day, I spoke with several ladies, one of whom I might never have spoken with had I not attended the midweek service. When I mentioned that my wife had recently gotten me into sketching, she related an experience in which she brought cookies and other baked treats to people in prison. On that visit, a member of her group got talking with one prisoner, and he showed them sketches that he had made. I found her recollection especially interesting, as I never mentioned to her that a member of my extended family was currently in prison. 

Anyway, back to my letter.

In the first part of November, our gym closed for refurbishment. As I wasn’t able to follow my normal routine, I did more walking, and did more exercises like pushups and sit-ups at home. Later in the month, when I visited the doctor for my annual physical, I weighed exactly the same as last year. I worked hard to lose a lot of weight several years ago, and since then I’ve gradually put on a few pounds each year. So with the additional food and treats that accompany the holidays, keeping the same weight seemed like a triumph.

Despite the apparent victory during his last hospital stay, [a family member] has since suffered several infections, and returned to the hospital for short visits. Last weekend a visit to the doctor’s office led to another overnight hospital visit. Why do you think sickness so often accompanies the Christmas season? Is it just all the good food, or something else?

Yesterday my wife conscripted me. She prepared a ham, and I cooked it according to her instructions. She arrived home in time to help me carve and lay the meat in a serving dish. Then she took it back to work, where she oversaw a potluck meal for fifty-plus workers. I also enjoyed ham for lunch. Suddenly, I don’t feel so out-of-step with the Christmas season.

I hope this letter finds you well, and that you are also able to celebrate the Christmas season, in whatever manner your current situation allows.

As the woman I met in church described the photorealistic drawings of the prison inmate she met, I couldn't help reflect on my own poor efforts. While most people are complementary about my sketches, I know I have a long way to go in developing my abilities. Still, I know what I really need to do is just set aside a little time each day. Anyone can draw, you just have to practice, as artist Mike Bocianowsky once told me.

And anyone can write a letter, pay a visit, or do something nice for someone who feels isolated and alone. Especially during the Christmas season.

Dragon Dave

Related Dragon Cache entries
Mike Bocianowski's Passion

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