Degradation Is The Worst Feeling That Comes With Incarceration
Sorry to keep people waiting for some more fresh moments straight out the penitentiary, but in here you have your up moments and you’ve got your down moments.
The past few weeks I’ve been riding one of those down moments… just trying to keep my sanity one day at a time is sometimes all I can manage. I’m taking the initiative and pulling myself out of the slump I’ve been living in and getting back in the groove of things.
I’ve got things to do and projects to finish and they’re not gonna finish themselves. I guess everyone deserves some down time every now and then to feel sorry for themselves. The only difference is whether or not you continue to feel sorry for yourself forever or stop at some point, dust yourself off and get on with life no matter what that life looks like to you.
I’ve been in that slump for a few weeks now and its time for me to move on put those worries into the background.
You know…. something happened this week that made me realize that no matter where you’re at in life or what position you may be in, someone out there always has it worse.
This is what happened… I have this friend in my housing unit, whom we’ll call Kate. She is the closest person in my life right now because we live in the same building, we share a lot of the same interests and we basically do everything together.
Well, Kate is very close with her bunky, as what tends to happen when you’ve lived a long time with the same person in such a small space… this can create a relationship closer than family sometimes, because you spend the most time together than with any other human… including family members. Blood isn’t always thicker than water.
Well, about two months ago, Kate’s bunky ( whose name will remain private) found out that her three year old grandson was killed. That in itself would be enough to send someone over the deep end, but unfortunately this is not where this story ends.
Throughout the past two months, this woman has been grieving and going through a living hell as the case of her grandson’s murder has been an open pending investigation. As recently as two weeks ago, the investigation has turned more towards this woman’s daughter being the primary suspect in her son’s death. Almost daily since this tragedy happened Kate, and her bunky have both been calling together to check in and see if anything has changed, such a charges being brought against her daughter or not.
Well, last Friday both Kate and her bunky go to the phone outside and call home to see if anything has changed and indeed they had… on this phone call she found out every parents worst nightmare. Her daughter was found shot to death, execution-style in her own bed. This poor woman… within two months she lost her grandson and her daughter. My friend was absolutely broken fighting her own tears as she tried her best to comfort her bunky, who is literally in a million pieces on the floor in their room.
And do you know that only a few minutes after she received this unfathomable news…one of our amazing officers was doing a round and stopped by their door and opened it, she saw Kate’s hand on her bunky’s shoulder, the officer flipped out and told her “Get your hand off of her and make your bed!”
That’s what they were concerned about…. a fucking bed not being made properly. I thought my friend was going to go to segregation because she just couldn’t believe the heartlessness, so she was a little pissed. Thankfully the other officer on duty had half a heart and calmed her down and told her to go back and comfort her bunky.
Its unbelievable… I get it and I understand the rules for not being about to touch another in here. But, can you imagine the worst thing that ever happened in your life and you weren’t able to be held or comforted in anyway. You’re just suppose to forget that you’re human. It can be so cruel in here.
And the heartlessness of this story doesn’t end with just that… nope, I witnessed it firsthand. About two nights ago I saw Kate’s bunky get off the phone, and we live close by each other, so I walked her to her room and just let her know that my heart is with her during this very trying time and that she’s not alone. I was stopped by her door for about 20 seconds and all four officers that were sitting together in their station all yelled at me. So I quietly walk back over to the desk and in a very low voice a told the officer that that lady is my friend and her daughter was just shot in the head and I’m just telling her I’m here for her.
I thought that would trigger some sort of human conscious response, maybe some sympathy… but I was dreaming. The officer I was talking to cut me off, telling me that I’m not about to make excuses for my behavior…. and the other officer sitting behind her, backed her up with… “Now she wants to argue with you!”
I couldn’t believed it… I wasn’t arguing at all. I had to just turn and leave. I was cooking in the microwave about five feet away from them, so I had to bite my lip until it bruised, so I wouldn’t say something that would get me a ticket. I’m about to start college full time in the spring and one misconduct will make me ineligible. I had no choice but to shut up. There are no second chances.
This situation was just a huge reminder to me that we are less than human to those in charge of us. Degradation is the worst feeling that comes with incarceration. Worse than sorrow, loneliness and self pity combined.