Loose Woman: my odyssey from lost to found
Finalist for the Whistler Independent Book Award
Loose Woman tells of the life-changing year, 1979, when a quasi-alcoholic, successful, lost young actor surprised herself by agreeing to live and work in a community of intellectually disabled men in the south of France.
In this intimate, sometimes hilarious memoir, she leaves behind the bars and backstages of the Canadian theatre scene to embark on an extraordinary odyssey of self-discovery and redemption.
From the prologue
My encounter with Jean Vanier’s friends that day had been my only contact with the mentally and physically challenged. Until this summer.
Now here I was, just turned twenty-nine, an actress who’d temporarily left behind a blossoming career and a social life unhinged after a decade of bad choices — the wrong drugs, the wrong men, possibly even the wrong profession, the right booze but far too much of it. Usually to be found in a small Vancouver apartment with her cat.
Now living in an ancient farmhouse in central France with six severely handicapped men. At the moment, trying to sleep beside Jean-Claude and Emile in a sodden tent in a dwindling thunderstorm in a sea of sheep.
The motto of L’Arche was “Changing the world, one heart at a time.” So far, the place was working wonders with mine.