Posts Tagged ‘dynamics’

I’m at the Milwaukee Secure Detention Facility (MSDF), an institution in the Wisconsin Prison System (WPS), participating in the Earned Release Program (ERP).  I’m still dealing with the ripple effect from my trip to the hole.  The guards that packed my stuff were not gentle and had destroyed all my boxes which I had used to store my things here.  They put it all in brown paper bags.  I don’t know how I’m going to carry that stuff out of here when I leave in about 60 days.  One thing is for sure as well.  I’m probably the only person in the history of the WPS to go to the hole for blogging related reasons.  Not exactly good for my cred with other inmates you know?  I can’t even picture myself explaining it.  Of course I’m kidding.  But these were thoughts going through my head.  I spoke with my adoptive parents Charles and Victoria Martin and while I was in the hole they had discussions with my parole officer Gayle Gaither and they were going to put a phone line in for my electronic monitoring device.  Gaither also told them she approved me to attend his retirement party and services in Michigan in mid-July.  Charles says farewell to his career as a full-time minister.  They they dropped a bombshell on me.  It seems my ex-wife and former step-children will be there as well.  Boy, with that, just getting out of prison and dealing with all sorts of family and friends from over the years that weekend, its making me already wish I could hide on that weekend.  But that’s not an option.  The anxiety junkie has just got to suck it up for the sake of my adoptive father and the family.  Another loose end left over prior to going to the hole was the response to my biological family letter.  My aunt had revealed that my biological father and her “had protected each other” as children and basically I shouldn’t be so hard on him for the things that happened and she was sorry they hadn’t been there to protect me and my half-brother.  My response wasn’t based on what I’ve learned but on instinct.  I pray it was the right one.  I asked when and if she was comfortable to share what happened to her and him as kids so I might understand him.  I also told her I’m not angry at all with them for not protecting me and the domino effect of all this through the years.  Between you and me I probably was angry at them somewhat over time.  But I sense we’re right at the edge of something huge here and it could be life changing for all of us.  After that, it was another rough night of sleep.  Perhaps all of this stress with things like my release, adopted family, biological family, and ripple effect from the blog being discovered is getting to me.  It’s a different kind of stress than paying the bills and going to work everyday but its real nonetheless.  The topic today for the ERP group coincidentally was domestic violence.  Our ERP group leader Ms. Grey was again very upbeat.  She also pointed out much of the lack of dynamics in our ERP group was our refusal to challenge each other.  She’s right of course.  We watched videos depicting various people who hurt the women in their lives.  I shared my biological father’s cycle of violence since it was already on my mind.  At the end of the day, Ms. Grey indicated I’d only have to make up one module I missed while I was in the hole.  She also indicated our Phase II goals and objectives would have to be presented this week so I’ll need to get busy on that. 

I’m at the Milwaukee Secure Detention Facility (MSDF), an institution in the Wisconsin Prison System (WPS), participating in the Earned Release Program (ERP). To start off with I wanted to mention these entries may seem different to you than in the past.  The entries are shorter and I don’t engage in much reflection or commentary like I used to.  Basically its because I don’t have as much time as I used to with all the ERP work I have now.  So please bear with me.  Anyway, our ERP group started with the final 2 videos from The Price of Freedom Is Living Free by Jack D. Cooper.  It dealt with our resistance to change, responsibility, irresponsibility, respect and disrespect.  Cooper’s video and workbook thus far are by far the best I’ve seen so far despite the age (one of the main characters sports a mullet if that gives you any idea).  Ms. Grey, our ERP Group Coordinator, I think has taken advantage of my inquisitive nature I think as it seems to jump start group discussions. She’ll challenge me on something and that gets the group discussion going. I am probably more willing than some to engage her in the discussion that some others.  Today her challenge was that I was playing the role of victim by not being willing to challenge my ex-wife and daughters on decisions they made.  If you’ve been following along you know that situation was a difficult one.  I’d learned to pick my battles and by the end I was fighting for my own survival.  But its another example of things I’ve realized on my own while blogging before I got here.  I’ve got to respect and care for myself first before anything else will work.  LOL.. I should have written a book instead of blogging – as if anyone would have wanted it.  But I’m beginning to understand this groups dynamics.  Just cause I’m called out, its not personal and might be done for other people’s benefits too.  After group, I got the poster ready  with my quote for the community meeting next Wednesday.  It reads “I Love You But I’m Not Your Hostage”.  I came up with that earlier when I was realizing I really had no right to be angry with those that claimed to love me yet might seem to have forgotten me, deserted me or not done what I wanted them to do.  And of course, the idea that when I got out, I’d “punish” them by cutting them off somehow would follow.  But the point is, that’s not love, that’s blackmail and it’s a continuation of the same kind of manipulation I practiced in my relationships prior to prison.  As soon as the quote went up, people started approaching me about the quotes meaning.  Some agreed, some didn’t.  It’ll be an interesting meeting next week.  After supper, cellie Malik Pearl, appeared and announced he was out of here.  It seems that dispute between the cellies next door I told you about had gotten so bad and they decided to move the instigator and Malik asked to move.  We’ve all been getting along so his timing is curious but I certainly don’t blame him.  The guys there are friends of his and lets face it, its just a matter of time before cellie Andre Charles blows again.  But for now our cell has gotten really quiet and peaceful.  I’m going to ride that wave while it lasts!