About Me, Ex-Con, Ex-Addict

Original Post from November, 2010 – “About me – Convicted felon and addict”

I am a 22 (update from the Editor – now 23) year old man who has a history and the personality of addiction, not only to pleasure but to punishment as well. I don’t deny I broke the law and that is why I am imprisoned today.

My crime is I am an addict. I have abused most substances. I have spent a total of about 1 year of my life in various rehabilitation treatment centers over the past 4 years. At first drinking was my major problem. Then I was arrested when I was 19 for “personal possession of a controlled substance, less than 1 gram”.  It was meth. By the time I was arrested for meth I already wanted to change my ways, stop drinking and stop using drugs, so I took action.

Thus started my series of trips to rehabs. Always going with the right desires, but as soon as things seemed OK I would pick up once again. Not long ago I had become so involved in my drug use I was shooting meth with heroin into my body. For me that was part of the thrill, knowing I could die from such use. I had become so discouraged with myself that I had attempted suicide. At first I told myself it was an accident but the scar on my wrist reminds me every day that it wasn’t. (Sorry Mom, I am sure you don’t like to read that.) I came very close to death that day, and I now have very limited use of my left hand and wrist. And, shortly after it happened I landed in jail so I haven’t had the physical therapy I probably need.

After leaving the hospital from that incident, I knew I had been given a chance to continue living . But I was already used to that feeling. See, it wasn’t my first near-death experience. So once again I was off and running. This last July, 30 months through my 3 years probation, I got arrested for possession of heroin. I have been in jail ever since.

And now, 3 months later, I have been convicted to 4 years in TDC for the heroin conviction to run concurrent with 1 year in Texas State Jail for the probation violation.

I’m writing this blog not because I want pity but to express the emotions, feelings and thoughts that now come to me, as I sit in jail and face intake into prison. The truth is I feel amazingly free in here. My spirits are high and my will to be happy is stronger than ever. See, in here I have no needle in my arm. I’m beginning to love myself for who I am.

I have never really believed that achievements make you, but rather that you make your achievements. I truly believe this is where I belong and I look forward to learning about myself. I am learning to love my neighbors since arriving here, even when it appears we are polar opposites. Because really, we are all part of the whole and not one of us is better than the other.

And, my attitude has changed. I am not sure why these changes are taking place but I welcome them. So to all of those who may be coming to jail or to prison, it isn’t always so bad and if you’re like me, it might be what you need.

Update 2013: I started this blog while incarcerated in the Texas Department of Corrections and Justice – TDCJ. I have been out on parole since March of 2012. I am keeping my original entry for this page here below, so you know my story. Now I am working on starting over. I will always have the label “ex-con” to carry with me, and I will always be an addict in recovery. It’s one day at a time, and I just keep putting one foot in front of the other.

Update 2014: As we come to the end of 2014, I am happy to report I am married for over a year, have a one year old son, and have been with the same job for over two years. I am still putting one foot in front of the other, and consider myself luckier than most. I still have bad days, and I still make bad choices on occasion – don’t we all? – but overall I think I am doing just fine.

Peace to all you out there, and if you are connected to someone locked up, my advise would be to try to send them letters when you can and visit if you can. It means a lot to them, believe me. And don’t give up hope – Everybody has change within them.

Update 2015: Still free! Still working! still married, and got a baby girl on the way! It’s not all been rosy days for me though. Read my story below. I was in prison for a couple years and I wish now I could have those years back. Maybe my story can help someone else, and I try to provide info on prison here. If you find yourself or maybe your child or parent facing prison, read my story and learn what you can. Knowledge is power. Peace out y’all.

25 thoughts on “About Me, Ex-Con, Ex-Addict

  1. As someone who has a young (19) year old son that is just being processed for a felony conviction that is going to land him in TDCJ, one of the things I worry about most is his ability in the future to support himself. Can you give me a brief description of what you do now and what you did when you got out to try to find employment? Thanks!

    1. Hey Brian, the job situation is tough for felons. A lot of jobs plain aren’t going to happen. Things like a carpet cleaner for instance, they don’t want to allow felons because this job entails going into folks homes. So most of the time those sorts of jobs which seem like a simple job for someone to get, a felon won’t be eligible. But the good news is, there are places that will give someone a chance. And some businesses are actually aware they can get a tax break for hiring felons, so they go out of their way to consider felons. There is a flooring place in Austin with that policy. Now I live in a small town and I work at a small construction company, it’s just a couple of employees. I was upfront about my situation. I was on parole and that means having to meet with a parole officer regularly and being late to work or leaving early on those days so there wasn’t much sense in hoping I could hide it for long. I also worked at a restaurant when I first got out. I told them straight up and asked them to give me a chance, and they did. Of course, you cannot join the military with a record, and you can’t have a job like a delivery person most times because they can’t get insurance on you. Or it would cost too much and it’s like the carpet cleaning, the company usually has a policy about no felons for that kind of job. When I got out I approached job hunting that no job was beneath me, and any job MIGHT be possible. I just applied everywhere. I got turned down a lot. I just made my job be job hunting until I found work. I don’t know what kind of work your son has done prior to his incarceration, but at least to start, he should be considering it will be some sort of manual labor job. Not likely he will be working at a bank or anything. Good news is, most folks work out a lot in prison so he will come out strong. Does he have tattoos? If he doesn’t yet, he might not listen, but you should urge him to at least be discreet with placement. I regret a couple I got while in prison, they show a lot and they are stupid and don’t help me. (Yeah, tattoos are against the rules and yeah, he will probably be tempted to get them while there anyway.) Anyway, your son’s job situation will work itself out when the time comes. Meanwhile, just focus on the current situation and write to him while he does his time, and visit if you can. Those visits and letters mean a lot. Peace to you man, and peace to your son too. ~ Magnum

  2. I have a friend incarcerated in Texas for the past 22 years. He’s written an essay, indicting the T.D.C.J. system and saying it doesn’t live up to its mission statement. Would you consider publishing it as a guest blog? He doesn’t wish to be identified for fear of retaliation.

    1. Hey Lance, I would be open to taking a look at it for a guest blog. I don’t mind him telling things like it is, but I would want to read it over and make sure it’s appropriate before committing to publishing it. This forum is meant to be mostly a place to get information and help and also I like to have information about prisons in general so it might be good. Send it on, I will let you know. Peace ~ Magnum

    2. Thanks for your response. How do I submit David’s essay on the T.D.C.J.? Can you provide your email address so I can send you the PDF file? Thanks again for any consideration.

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