Once in a Lifetime Opportunity
by Jessica Hardy as told to Lizzie Ashworth
Publication Date: November 4, 2019
In the mid-20th century, an entire generation of women found themselves caught up in a revolution. Young women tossed aside society’s rules that had governed women with an iron hand for hundreds of years. Suddenly women had agency, the right to their own identity. And their own sexual adventures. The story of Jessica Hardy and her seven-year marriage to Parker Grant brings that enormous cultural shift down to the personal level. As she enters college in 1966, Jessica is desperate to break out of her strict upbringing. Parker is her salvation, a graduating senior who becomes the love of her life. Newly married, they immerse in Parker’s duties as an air force officer and a world of their own making—nights in Las Vegas, windy Pacific beaches, and long summer days in the Philippine Islands. Slowly, with Parker’s encouragement, Jessica gains self-confidence and a sense of herself. But Jessica has a problem. She wants more. More knowledge, more experience, autonomy. Leaving no stone unturned, Jess breaks one rule after another—illegal abortion, drugs, one man then another, even time in jail. It’s an unexpected spiritual awakening that opens the door to the rest of her life. Once in a Lifetime Opportunity reveals this tumultuous time in a gut-wrenching portrayal of a woman determined to find her own way and the man who loved her.
Early years of my life raced by with little time for writing as I pursued a technical career, raised children, and made questionable progress in learning to paint. Finally with time to write, I dedicate myself to stories of pleasure as well as the occasional editing project. I enjoy cooking, gardening, and time at the Pacific coast. Sunrise and sunset bring special moods, the twilight between two worlds–fully of creative energy. I love snuggling up with a good book most of all–and a cat or two.
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