I haven’t wrote much lately because I’ve been in a rut. I’m beginning to think that it’s been my own version of depression. I haven’t been sad and down, which is what I think of when I think of depression. My brain hasn’t been functioning the same though, I’ve been having trouble putting together long in depth thoughts which are required to write these. I think it’s a self defense mechanism. The less I think about things, the less I realize about how bad things have been. I have a tendency to over think and over analyze things and because I have certain expectations about how some things are supposed to be, I’ve been disappointed about pretty much everything lately, which is what I think caused my thoughts to kinda shut down. I’ve also struggled with not looking down on myself for writing some of these blogs. As men we’re taught to not show feelings, but more than just being gender related I’m not supposed to let myself go through anything emotionally in here. I’m supposed to be numb, hard, and closed off. Feelings make you soft and vulnerable which is something that someone can exploit and use against you. Feelings have no place in here where I’m surrounded by killers and gang bangers. I have no sympathy for myself and what my actions have caused me to go through.

That’s only a small part of whats caused the discontent for me to have the mentality that I’ve had lately because there have been a lot of things going wrong. When the facilitator of this website made a Jpay (E-mail for the MDOC) for us to submit our articles it didn’t take long for the facility that I’m at to start censoring our correspondence, rejecting messages that didn’t violate policy. We’re not allowed to appeal rejections in here, but when someone from the world tried appealing the rejections and call up here trying to talk to someone they couldn’t get a response. Something like that happening was expected, even if it’s true the MDOC doesn’t want the public to know what really goes on in here. They’re clearly reading my messages otherwise they wouldn’t have been getting rejected and they didn’t like what I had to say. Regardless of the fact that they’re violating my First amendment right to free speech they’ll still do what they can to try to keep a positive image and manipulate the public perception so they don’t know what really goes on in here and how corrupt it really is.

That was just the beginning. After a few weeks of some rejections the inspectors at my facility deleted the Jpay contact for the website and I got a notice saying it was now on the forbidden contact list. The way that they wrote their policy for e-mails they basically have control over everything because they purposely make policy vague so they can manipulate it any way they want. I still tried to contest it, writing both inspectors here and the mail room. The mail room said the inspectors did it and they have nothing to do with it. Neither of the inspectors responded. I had someone call up here numerous times to talk to the inspectors and they would get sent to voicemail, and of course they never called back.

The next hit didn’t come from the MDOC, but Facebook decided to take our group page for the website down because it doesn’t meet “community standards”. I don’t know how some prisoners expressing themselves about their reality in an articulate and honest way that’s helping their own personal growth and hopefully helping others could go against “community standards”. We’re not promoting violence, hate, or breaking the law. I put a lot of thought, time, and effort into doing what I could to develop this website so people like me could have a platform to use for an outlet, to help others, and to help ourselves. How can we not fit “community standards”? The other co-founder for the site has reached out to Facebook to see what it was that caused this to happen and how we can possibility correct it and to the best of my knowledge they haven’t responded. This website really gave my life for the time being purpose for something that’s bigger than myself and for all these things to happen it was discouraging. These are just the things that have been going wrong with the website.

Along with those things I’ve also had some personal problems. The biggest one being my legal situation. Since I wrote “The legal road so far” I’ve received a full copy of my case file, from the arrest to everything in my appeal so far. Of course that just presented more issues than I was aware of before, which hopefully works out for the better but it also adds more work for me now and complicates my appeal because of what has to be added. Every time I go into my legal work it’s bitter sweet. It’s bitter because based off EVERYTHING that I read I was done wrong and should have never been allowed to get charged with the serious charge that I was charged with, but it’s sweet because that means that I should be able to get back in court and have that corrected. Almost everyday is a struggle because with the time that I have in now, if I was correctly charged, I’d be getting ready to go home instead of having 12 1/2 years left. Nothing’s guaranteed and even though by law I should get back in court it doesn’t mean it’s going to happen. By law, what happened to me should have never happened in the first place. I have no faith in the system. Because of the seriousness and amount of issues that I have, my next step is to file a motion for a new trial. If it gets granted then I start over from the very first stage in the court process. So now I have to try to be patient because when I do file the motion I have to wait for them to rule on it, which I’m sure it’s going to take even longer than usual because of the Corona virus pandemic and everything that’s been coming with that. It’s something that has really made me understand the saying that ignorance is bliss because before I started doing my own research I had accepted that I had to do what I was sentenced to and the only hope of getting out earlier than that was if they brought good time back. When I knew that I had to do the time, I was at peace with it because it was reality. My normal everyday life had a lot less stress in it. With me knowing now that I was never supposed to get the time that I got, it’s changed my whole perspective. I haven’t accepted that I have to do all that time and I have to fight to get my freedom back. Its added more stress. It’s made me think about how I shouldn’t have to be subjected to the limited lifestyle of being in here. I want a real bed, some real food, the chance to go out and be social and meet someone, to get a job so I can start making a life for myself, to reconnect with my family, to drive a car on the open road and know that I can go wherever I want. I want the freedom to be able to have options, so I can make my own choices instead of having everything dictated to me. Everyday I wake up I have to try to move past the fact that I’m not supposed to be here, dealing with all of this. But dealing with it is also part of my motivation to keep doing everything I can to get out.

Whenever something goes wrong now my initial reaction is to blame the system. Like I can’t find a girl on a pen pal site because I want intimacy and when I was out I never had a problem with girls. Or having money problems because I only get paid .54 cents a day for my job and I owe restitution so I can’t even afford to buy the things that I’m allowed in here to make me more comfortable. One of the biggest things is how me doing this much time has effected my relationships in a negative way with literally everyone who was in my life before this, including my family. I also think about how I can’t be there for them because I’m in here. Especially in hard times, like right now because of how crazy everything is with the Corona virus stuff.

I had also got sick about a month ago when the flu was going around. It was short but intense, I didn’t eat for 2 days because I was nauseous and my taste buds were screwed up and everything tasted terrible, my equilibrium was thrown off so whenever I got up to use the bathroom or get water I was leaning and walking sideways. The first day I couldn’t get warm, I took a shower and got under water so hot it turned my skin pink but I still felt cold. I almost never get headaches, but my head felt like it was being pulled apart at the temples. There was a cough and some congestion but it wasn’t too bad. The medical supplies that we’re allowed to purchase are severely limited and you have to see a nurse 3 times before you get to see a doctor, and the only thing the nurses do is give you aspirin and tell you to drink water. They also charge you $5 every time you see healthcare, but you know that you’re not going to get anything accomplished unless you see a doctor, so if you do actually get to see one you’ve paid $20 by then.The healthcare staff basically think that we’re all liars and we’re trying to manipulate the system so they make us jump through hoops before we can actually get something done about our issues and they can charge us numerous times. If you’re sick in here you’re basically left to deal with it with the stuff that’s available to us through the store. The prison I’m at is also on quarantine, originally from the flu but now it’s because of the Corona virus.

The stock market crashed and almost all of my money is invested into it, so I’m broke on top of everything else. All these things are what led me to deal with the state of mind that I’ve had and why I haven’t been writing much lately. I don’t really have a way to take a break and get away from most of these problems.

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