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Marilea C. Rabasa

I grew up in the culture of New England in a small Massachusetts town. How I got from there to the West Coast is an interesting tale. Scroll down to read The Addict’s Parents United blog.

For a number of years, I was an ESL teacher in northern Virginia. And before that, in a former life, I lived overseas in the Foreign Service. Just as I provided “springboards” for my students in writing class, my travels provide the backdrop for my second book, a memoir full of humor and pathos, on how I’ve overcome my lifelong depression and found my own prescription for happiness. Stepping Stones: A Memoir of Addiction, Loss, and Transformation was published by She Writes Press in June 2020 and won the 2020 Best Book Award.

When I’m not writing, I sing in a small women’s choir. And I do volunteer work in twelve-step organizations. My partner and I still get away whenever we can to enjoy hiking, skiing, and canoeing locally. The rest of the year is for grandchildren and salt air at our home on an island in Puget Sound.

Toward the end of my teaching career, I earned my Master of Arts in Teaching. That journey was critical for me because it was a Master’s in Reflective Practice. Now that I’m retired, I have time to reflect on my fortunate life. But it’s an inward journey I’ve been on for the past few years. My bittersweet mother/daughter memoir, A Mother’s Story: Angie Doesn’t Live Here Anymore, was published in New Mexico in 2014 and won the 2015 International Book Award. It was my first full-length publication.

I have published almost exclusively in the memoir genre. In a piece I published almost three years ago, I talk about how “writing, for me, is self-discovery. It’s a real excavation process, as we mine our depths often coming out so much richer in self-knowledge than we were in the beginning.” If my first book was a “memoir of recovery,” then Stepping Stones digs much deeper, exposes more, and gets to the true heart of my story. Time—and all the perspective it offers me—is an invaluable tool as I seek to unravel my own life in the search for answers to some important questions.