The Felonious PhD.

White Collar Female PhD. Felon, Prison Camp, Re-Entry, Criminal Justice Reform. Women, Lesbian

Recurring Dream…..of FREEDOM!

I often wake up abruptly from happy, joyous, and peaceful dreams of being home.  Last night I had another one of my recurring dreams.  I dreamed I was home in my kitchen, listening to my iPod through my wireless speaker, as India Arie sang through bringing smiles to my heart!  I love the “Beautiful Day” song!

I have experienced spotty flashes of being “Free” and it hurts my soul to even acknowledge that I am, at present, fundamentally enslaved to the criminal justice process.  No matter how mindful I am to remind myself that this is a temporary state of being, I cannot help but accept that, historically, the process of enslavement (and I mean legal enslavement and captivity of any sort) leaves a residue on a soulful, free-thinking human heart.

The recurring dreams I have often include being with my son.  Currently, I miss everything that being his mother involves.  I am particularly missing the opportunity to have an impact on his life as he is transitioning from being a boy to a being a young man.  There are certain things that a son needs to learn from his mother.  i am missing the chance to wear his jersey #74 (he’s so proud it’s the same as Michael Oher’s) at his football games.

I know many would say and feel the same as the rest of the legal system does, “We must make an example of you,” to show others that it does not pay to f@#k with the government.  This is a very scary, fear-based perspective that leaves out so many human factors and perspectives.

I have always dreamed of being a productive force in creating a word that was loving, peaceful, and inclusive.  Now, I write this we an extreme amount of intense love, I dream of FREEDOM!  I feel like my life has come full circle.  As a young girl, growing up in the ghetto, desperately wanting to achieve more, I knew what I was looking to be free from.  Today, I find myself in mid-life (fabulously 50) in prison, separated from my son, grand kids, family and friends, stuck in an environment that has nothing to offer me.  Trapped and contained as a punishment!  Once again I dream of FREEDOM!

I ache and long for the day I will not only walk out of here, but also for the day that I will be completely free from the scrutiny of the Department of “Justice.”  Today, the process has me completely shackled, in a very humbling, depressing, ridiculous and unnecessary experience.  But each night, at 9:45 pm, when I close my eyes as I lay on the bottom bunk with my mp3 music blasting in my ears, I dream of FREEDOM!

I am thankful for the ability to dream.   Through this nightmare, I still dream in rainbows and butterflies, and in color.  Reminding myself that life is always worth living, and when tomorrow comes, it will have wonderful possibilities!

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A year down, 12 months, 365 days…………….What I’ve learned!

Today marks a year since I silently, fearlessly and with much internal resistance walked into the Victorville Federal Prison Camp. As an educator, professional, foster mom, sister, aunt, grandmother, friend and mother, I have always tried to use every life experience I have participated in as a learning and teaching guide. Thus far, I have to honestly admit, I have come to the realization that this experience itself, meaning being incarcerated, which in turn is supposed to lead to some form of redemption for me and the others who are also in prison, is nothing more than an empty space which time passes through.  I have had to find a way to inhabit the space and empty time to create my own lesson.

Creating my own lessons is not much different than any other experience I have encountered in my life;  except, here I am forced to wear ugly green men’s clothes, cotton granny panties, and used green sports bras that forcefully suppress all of my womanhood. Oh, and let me now forget the heavy steel-toed combat boots, whew!!!!

This year I have learned that I still hold the ability to operate as myself – a loving, caring, happy, peaceful woman.  As I have done through much of my life, I can create my own bliss in what I consider to be Hell. I am proud of myself.  Creating bliss was easy to do as a child and an adolescent who fought her way through the depths of depression, sadness and despair, because I had no reference as to  how hard it would be.  I had a certain amount of naivety that just allowed me to utilize my bullish will and my heartfelt charm and fearlessness to strive for my dream of graduating college and helping my family. Those are all checked off my list now. Dream achieved. I sit here NOW, looking back on the year I have spent wondering what in the hell is this about and critically debating internally and with friends the purpose of a system that seeks to destroy you and then demands that you leave with a desire to once again participate in this mess, I have come to a conclusion. I have decided that this is not new!!! This madness has always existed and I was able to not only operate more than resiliently….. I was successful and happy.

I have also learned that everyone who is tethered to me and vice versa has the ability to care for and live their lives without my controlling, directing, and giving all of myself to their cause. Even my 15 year old son is doing what he has learned for years and without my physical presence he is using his foundation to continue what we started. I am so proud of him and I appreciate the lessons he is indirectly teaching me.

I have learned a lot more, but none of it is useful in the “OUTS” lololololol. The ridiculousness of this structure and our Criminal Justice system will give me years and years of writing material and jokes. I plan to write my little heart out once I am out of this Camp.

Another year or so to go and this phase of my journey will be over. I hate to say time has gone by fast but it has. A lot of things in my life stopped when my imprisonment began, but thankfully time is constant and it is constantly on the move. For that I am FOREVER THANKFUL!!!!

Life truly is worth living!–Felonious Little PhD 10/14

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