Being in prison can feel like a never-ending state of being trapped. I call it, “the land of misfits,” or even “purgatory.” Writing and drawing have saved me from this world of darkness, bitterness, hopelessness, and fear.
Now that I write about and draw about my experience, I know someone else knows how I feel, and what’s the truth of it all. It also makes me feel accomplished, that somehow I’ve made a difference in the world.
I am thankful to my mentor and friend Haley Epping of Maryland who helped me find a way to tell my story. Haley and I met as pen pals when we were both college students. She listens and encourages me to be the best I can be, and her walls are full of my art. With her support, I know I’m doing the most I can in these circumstances. I’m no longer a victim of my circumstance; I am a survivor.
I’m thankful for my blessings. My mind is free, though my body is not.
Disclaimer: The views in this article are those of the author. Prison Journalism Project has verified the writer’s identity and basic facts such as the names of institutions mentioned.