Life After Release means more than some may see when reading this blog. I am a fraction of the true gravity that these posts represent by concept, a mere example of the thousands of returning citizens who reenter society each year who face unimagined circumstances.
Today I’m at a local park enjoying the cooler weather as Fall approaches.
I was blessed with seeing a deer crossing the paved path upon which I walked snapping photos and taking videos on a device that did not exist before my arrest on August 18, 1988, a smartphone.
Yesterday, I learned not to trust or depend on Air/Vac machines to work. At $1.50 each attempt to check and inflate my tires, and at three locations, I succeeded at getting three of my four tires properly inflated.
I ran out of quarters!
One definition of “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.”
Well, I must be a little off in the head because I could have pulled into a Goodyear or PepBoys and not have dealt with thieving Air/Vac machines, but I chose to do it, not once, but three times before pulling into a Goodyear shop to get air in the fourth tire, and it was free. 🤠
More will be revealed. Right now I need to ZOOM-IN to a Twelve Step Meeting on the other side of the United States.
Isn’t life grand with so much technology? Speaking of the such, now I am doing affiliate marketing on WonderfulThingsDone.
WonderfulThingsDone, doing business as WTD4U, provides limited services to predominantly federal prisoners, those held within the walls, bars, and fences of the United States Federal Bureau of Prisons. One service includes sending periodic blog posts to keep the incarcerated informed about events and activities or topics of concern to the inmate population, such as prison or criminal justice reform.
On April 2, 2020, I sent the following information to many prisoners through Corrlinks.com, a service federal prisoners pay to use for sending and receiving emails:
Coronavirus numbers on the inside and outside continue to grow.
“I hope that each of you is staying safe and sane in the ever-changing situation going on with the Coronavirus pandemic. It’s tough being locked down and feeling helpless over so many aspects of life on the inside and life outside of the prison walls. But we, as humans, will survive and get past this, one day at a time.
“Staff and inmates alike have a significant issue to deal with as the virus continues to spread inside the walls of the United States Federal Bureau of Prisons, as well as for those of us in the free society. And even though it may be tough to deal with the conditions of a lockdown, especially if having to eat sack lunches and having limited access to showers, cleaning supplies, telephones, Trulincs/Corrlinks, and recreational activities, I feel most will agree that the lockdown is necessary to minimize the damage caused by this virus ravaging the population of the world at large.
“Here are the numbers listed today (April 2, 2020) for the B.O.P. The numbers increased from 57-inmates yesterday to 75 today, and from 37-staff yesterday to 39 today. https://www.bop.gov/coronavirus/index.jsp
COVID-19 Tested Positive Cases
“(Inmate) 4/02/2020 – USP Atlanta (5); FMC Butner (10); USP Canaan; FCI Danbury (15); FCI Elkton (2); FCC Forrest City (2); FCC Lompoc (12); MCC New York (4); FCC Oakdale (12); FCI Otisville; FCC Yazoo City (4); RRC Brooklyn, NY (4); RRC Janesville, WI; RRC Phoenix, AZ; FLM Guam
“(Staff) 4/02/2020 – Atlanta, GA (3); Brooklyn, NY (4); Butner, NC; Chicago, IL (3); Danbury, CT (4); Leavenworth, KS (no inmate contact); Lompoc, CA; Milan, MI; New York, NY (5); Oakdale, LA (4); Otisville, NY; Ray Brook, NY (2); Talladega, AL (2); Tucson, AZ; Yazoo, MS (3); Central Office, Washington, DC; Grand Prairie, TX; Southeast Regional Office, Atlanta, GA
“Here are some numbers that show the magnitude of the worldwide effect. The April 2, 2020, updated report issued at 2:35 pm EST, on the spread of the Coronavirus is as follows:
“Total Confirmed Cases: 981,221
“Active cases: 726,386
“Fatal cases: 50,230
“Sample of Select Countries Affected: United States: 235,787; Italy: 115,242; Spain: 110,238; Germany: 84,264; China (mainland): 81,589; France: 56,989; Iran: 50,468; United Kingdom: 33,718; Switzerland: 18,267; Turkey: 18,135; Belgium: 15,348; Netherlands: 14,697; Canada: 11,060; Austria: 10,967; South Korea: 9,976; Portugal: 9,034; Brazil: 7,011; Israel: 6,211; Sweden: 5,568; Australia: 5,136.
“Every day I watch the data grow on reported cases of the Coronavirus, especially in the State of Georgia and local counties therein. The good thing is that most people who contract the coronavirus will survive and live to fight another day, but that doesn’t negate the seriousness of this social problem affecting almost everyone in some way. Each one of us can only control our impact and contribution towards the resolution of the pandemic by doing what we can to minimize the spread of the virus, where possible.
“In the prison setting where needed supplies are limited or prohibited, and disinformation runs rampant about what’s being done to stop the spread of the Coronavirus, each person can only do what is within their control:
“1) Limit close contact with others where possible (impossible when locked in a cell with another person who may not have sanitary habits).
“2) If you cough, cough inside your elbow rather than your hand, since coughing in your hand and touching objects spreads germs.
“3) Take precautions by wash hands frequently, and especially before touching the eyes, nose, or mouth, after having touched a surface or other person.
“4) And what works for me, take additional vitamin C to help the immune system stay strong, and for throat irritation from a cold or allergy or other illness, use a Lemon Squeeze to add one teaspoon of lemon juice into one cup of water as warm as you can stand it to gargle with, two-three times per day.
“5) do regular deep-breathing exercises to increase the oxygen level inside the body (viruses and diseases thrive in low oxygenated environments, including our bodies).
“(If interested in breathing exercises that help reduce stress and improves our health, according to Dr. Andrew Weil, MD, send email to email@example.com to request more info.)
“I hope some of the above information provides something you can use to stay safe and to help live with better health. Let me know if you wish to be excluded from this type of email.”
COVID-19 CONTINUES ITS RAMPAGE ACROSS AMERICA
Within a matter of hours after posting the numbers from the COVID-19 TRACKER, by 2:25 am, Eastern Standard Time, the number of those infected topped one million, 245,175 cases in the United States.
Globally, a total of 53,069 known people have died from COVID-19 since health official began tracking the current rampage.
When the United States Bureau of Prisons updates their website at 3:00 pm today (April 3, 2020), I expect those numbers to have also grown.
Statistics cannot show all who have been infected with or died from the Coronavirus, because there is not a way for anyone to know about the devastating effects of a virus that may lay inside a person’s body, undiscovered, infecting those who come near enough to inhale droplets from a cough or sneeze, or who touch an item or surface where the germs cannot be seen with the naked eye.
From inside the prison cells I lived for over thirty-years, I could not see the sky through the trees. To simultaneously capture the beauty of the Sun and the Moon shining through trees would have been miraculous, as it was when I snapped the photo on my cellphone.
A loved one gave me the cellphone I used to partake in the experience that I now share the beauty of with the world.
Everything I have for comfort and convenience has been provided by friends or loved ones. I’m Grateful and Blessed by the Best!
A New Life: Important Words and Feelings: Humbling! Fortunate! Blessed!
In Electronic Chain I wrote about the beginning of a new life on March 8, 2019, when I was officially released from the custody and control of the United States Federal Bureau of Prisons. https://straightfromthepen.com/electronic-chain
Many things changed since I left Dismas Charities, Inc., most for the good, some not-so-good. The not-so-goods fall under an “Expectations” category, which often creates negative emotions in any living, breathing, human being because things aren’t going according to plan. OUR plan.
For instance, I expected to find a job and to be doing well by now, financially, because I am skilled and knowledgeable in many areas, with documented evidence of skills and a verifiable high Grade Point Average in college. I’m still unemployed, eight months later, and living with relatives I am fortunate to have willing to give me a place to roost.
I didn’t expect to be discriminated against by potential employers and online employment agencies because of my age. I have been, evident by the line going dead when I answer these questions: “When did you graduate or get your GED?” “What year were you born?”
Good things happened more than not-so-good things. I’m still alive and free and that makes life much better for me, and I hope for others, too!
Oddly enough, moments after I began typing this blog a few days ago, Google notified me that I had been officially verified as being me and the owner of the information listed in the Knowledge Panel associated with the name, Wayne T. Dowdy. Though some information Google relied upon is outdated, I’m pleased to be acknowledged as being ME. I’ll work on bringing Mr. Google up to date.
Outside in the sunshine or the moonlight, I feel like me, a free man, a man with choices. A man who knows he is fortunate to walk outside, alone, at night or during the day, without chains and hound dogs chasing him. (Read “The Price of Change” in Essays & More Straight from the Pen [$9.95 USD] and you’ll understand the significance of the last clause of that sentence.) https://www.amazon.com/dp/1794396829/ref=rdr_ext_tmb
Don’t count on WordAds to pay the bills if you pay for an upgrade on a WordPress.com website, unless you have thousands of followers and visitors on your website. Without the traffic, you’ll be paying the monthly fees, as I am doing, but it’s all good, because at least I do get to enjoy the privilege of getting my words spread all over the world.
Now I need to go work on my other websites at waynedowdy.weebly.com or wonderfulthingsdone.com or wonderfulthingsdone.net, to see if I can get those sites working and maybe even generating funds and business, so that I will become an employer and won’t need to work for someone else.
To use truthful rationalization as a coping mechanism, I prefer business partners, anyways.
So, to all you employers who discriminate against us returning citizens who grew old during our draconian sentence, stick that job where the sun and moon won’t shine.
In light of all the above, I know things work according to the will of my Higher Power, whom I chose to call God, and that everything will be okay. Life is a matter of perception!
I’m doing well at adjusting to this new life, it’s just a little different than how I imagined it would be before I walked out of the prison doors. It’s all good! I’m GOOD, too!