Prison Same Thing Same Time

Prison is very structured, every day we do the same thing, at the same time, with the same people.

We get counted at the same time, we eat at the same time, pretty much everything is the same day, after day, after day. In fact each week we eat the same food and some of the inmates cimagesalculate the time they have left by the menu.

For example, one of my old roommates would say, “I only have 5 hamburger days left until I go home.” Last week they had a special meal.  Normally we have a hamburger on Wednesday, chicken on Thursday and fish on Friday. Instead on Wednesday they gave us fish and it was the talk of the compound. I was in education listening to numerous inmates say, “Why did they give us fish on hamburger day, what’s going on around here?”

As the chatter continued one of the clerks walked in and said,” What’s wrong with you people! Bah, Bah, you sound like a bunch of sheep!” I started laughing. One of the inmates came up to me yesterday and asked who I was going to lunch with. I told her about 700 other people and she was welcome to join us:) Not much variety around here we all eat at the same place at the same time every day:)

I live by the telephone again so that brings some entertainment. A couple of days ago a new inmate was screaming on the phone. She said, “Junior, I can’t live like this! I need some money. I need to be able to depend on you, I can’t sit in here and wonder if you will come through!  This ain’t no joke, this is Federal Prison and these people have nothing to lose. I could get stuck and buried six feet under.” She screamed, “I need some money so I can wash my behind (Her language was a little more colorful) I’m not going to make it in here without some money.”  I asked my Bunkie if she was talking about Dublin? There’s not even anywhere to bury someone here? Then I heard the Woman say,” Look Junior, you better drop $25.00 off at western union in the moIMG_3750rning before grandma takes you to school.” I was shocked! She was talking to her son, and her son was still in school!  My Bunkie told me to throw her a bar of soap, she obviously needed some help.

My son Jace and his wife came to see me this weekend, it was so wonderful to see them. We laughed and talked and Jace was able to give me a priesthood blessing. What a gift to have such a loving and supportive family. Sarah was a little worried that prison may have changed me, she said she was glad to see me doing so well. She was also surprised that the women in visiting looked so normal. I told her that many of the women are here on a conspiracy charge which means they knew someone doing something wrong and wouldn’t tell on them.

One of the teachers I work with recently told me, “The only difference between myself and you Ladies is that if you drive by and witness a drug deal going on and a cop pulls you over to ask what happened many of you would say, “I don’t know, I didn’t see a thing.” He said, “I would say, It was him right there!” I laughed but he’s right.  Many of the women are here because they wouldn’t tell on their husbands/boyfriends. I feel differently about telling, I recently told my daughter CJ she should always tell when someone does something wrong, especially if it’s the government!

There is a code that criminals live by that I think is unhealthy. Don’t we want our children to tell when something isn’t right? I realize that many of these women have been lied to and treated poorly by the legal system but they have to change the way they think, the criminal code hasn’t worked out that well for them to this point in their lives. Conspiracy is the most common charge in prison and it carries with it 10 years. It’s the easy way out for a prosecutor, as if their job wasn’t easy enough.  Now instead of proving someone did something wrong they just hit them with a conspiracy charge, I shake my head everyday wondering, “How did we give these clowns in the government, that are supposed to represent the people, so much power?” The one truth that gives me comfort is that they still don’t hold a candle to our all powerful Father in Heaven.

I hope my posts haven’t been too negative lately.  I decided this week that even though I was struggling I wanted to share my feelings. Life isn’t always easy, if it were it wouldn’t be worth much. It’s how we do when the cards are down that counts. When someone struggles with health issues or the loss of a child, or even when a person is in prison. It brings strength to walk through our challenges, and I can testify that our Father in Heaven and Savior Jesus Christ will be there every step of the way along with loved ones from the other side. There are lessons to be learned and growth takes place during these dark hours, I know that this time will pass and I will be reunited with my family and friends.  All will be glorious in the end.