Saturday, February 13, 2010

Criminal


Driving this morning, I realized something; today, at almost exactly this time last year, I was in the process of being arrested and taken to jail for beating my boyfriend. I didn't really beat him; I actually slapped him on his back. But he called 911-->mostly because I'd just come to realization that I definitely could not be married to him, even though those were our plans & I told him how I was feeling. He was getting ready to deploy to Iraq & I think that news was just too much for him at the time. He freaked the fuck out & the final result was me slapping him to get him to stop throwing furniture around the house (I had guests coming in 2 hours) and him calling 911 to spite me.

He never anticipated that I would get arrested; he thought the officers would come and slap me on the wrist, tell me how bad of a person I am for breaking a soldier's heart, and continue to let him throw furniture.

I'm being very blunt. It's not because I don't care who reads this or what people who read this will think of me. I really do care and this is very painful for me to write; I never thought of myself as the kind of girl who would be in THAT kind of relationship, let alone be arrested.

That guy I was dating is not a bad guy. At that point in our relationship, we'd become accustomed to hurting eachother out of spite. So much happened in that relationship--looking back on it, I wonder how either of us ever stayed in for so long because it was horrible. It was really Hell.

I spent Friday, February 13th of 2009 in jail, as well as that Saturday, and that Sunday morning.

I was moved from the holding tank into Cell Block D. I had four cellmates & they were really nice women. I was so surprised after talking to them that I blurted out, "Wow, I was so scared of being in here, but you guys are really nice." I hadn't even thought about it, it was one of the most ignorant things I've said. One of my cellmates responded by saying, "Not everyone in jail is a bad person. They're just people who've made mistakes and been caught."

That Valentine's Weekend was a great experience. & that's NOT sarcasm. It was the weekend I was realized I didn't even love that guy (If I ever really had, it had been so long ago it was no longer relevant), & knowing that gave me the strength I needed to get out of that miserable relationship. It was the weekend I came to the understanding that ALL of my actions, no matter how small, had REAL consequences. It was the weekend I saw myself as a Criminal. I know how that sounds like it's actually not a very good thing, but in reality, we ARE ALL CRIMINALS. All of us break the law, just not everyone goes to jail. The word criminal is a label we use to separate ourselves from people in jail, to say, "I'm not like them. That's not me."
But it was me, and unfortunately, it's you, too. We think of criminals as murderers and rapists, robbers...we forget that there are white collar crimes, we forget that speeding, texting in school zones, pulling fire alarms for fun <--those are crimes. No one is better than anyone who has gone to jail simply because they haven't. & I think we often forget, some of the people who have most impacted the world have been imprisoned. IE Nelson Mandela, Bill Gates, Martin Luther King, Jr, Rosa Parks--> The list is a LONG ONE.

I'm getting off track. I meant for the point of this post to be that even though that experience was so painful and even embarrassing, I've learned and grown so much from it in just a year. I can't believe I had to go to jail to learn those things, but if it meant not knowing, I'm glad I went.

Happy Valentine's Weekend; I'm going to celebrate tonight by studying some Classical Mythology for my test Monday & going to bed early. :)

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