HOW THE HELL DID I END UP HERE
Now you just may be asking yourself How the hell did I get here? Yep, that is a very interesting question, and is one that I have repeatedly asked myself many, many times (almost daily). If you would kindly humor me and listen, I would like to tell you a little story.
Picture a Friday night in a shopping mall, and at first glance through the thick sea of people, it would be hard to not notice the common theme of excitement stamped on everyone’s face. People from all different walks of life, all different shape and sizes, all coming together for one inherent purpose. To enjoy their very best life this evening.
A sense of electricity filled the air, not knowing all that was possible. Some would be getting laid. Some would not. Some would be enjoying a movie. Maybe even grabbing a drink, getting high, or all of the above. Whatever was on tap tonight, good for them.
Meanwhile, oddly out of place in the middle of this love fest, stands an out of shape, middle-aged asshole with a criminal record, staring blankly through a window of a near empty store. The look of hopeless misery accompanies his face, defeat set firmly in his eyes, as he watches these groups walk by.
He also reeks of cleaning products, due in part to his closing shift coming to an end, as he had responsibly mopped the bathroom floor. Fore he is not some mere customer, but an employee. A minimum wage f****** employee, on this lovely Friday evening.
Now what sounds like the intro to a cruel joke, and a nightmare many would care to awaken from, is actually my real life based on a true story. You see, I’m that asshole. Well, was that is. Standing there looking like a creeper as I fogged up the window from my shallow breathing and the onset of a mild panic attack, I thought….
Dear sweet Jesus, how the hell did I end up here? I know I’ve had my share of screw ups, but was what I did so terrible? I mean, I’m a smart guy. So I cut a few corners – So what? Everyone does right? Big effing deal.
Well, I guess big effing deal in the eyes of the law. Be that as it may, I am here now. Envious of the asshole walking by me, eating his Cinnabon as it dripped off his fat face, free as a bird. All the while, I am stuck here living this life. It wasn’t always like this though.
Long before I was led out of my house in the early morning hours in cuffs, doing the perp walk of shame in my pajamas, I was doing big things. I mean, if you had seen me before all this shit went down, you would’ve creamed your pants. Really, I mean it.
I was wheeling and dealing. Making moves and going places. I was confident, self-assured. I knew what I wanted, and how to get it. And if I didn’t, God help you. Nothing could stand in my way. Yup, I had life by the balls, and was always twisting it ever so hard.
Sadly, it was all over before it started for me. Needless to say, experiencing my little fall from grace has given me great perspective on many a situation, and what could have been and what was not.
It has allowed me the opportunity for self discovery too. And one thing I self discovered is it’s a cold, hard, and unforgiving world for an individual with a criminal record.
I know, shocking. You’re probably saying, quite the breakthrough this jackass discovered.
More importantly, what I really discovered is how challenging things would be, and how one could easily lose their mind in the perfect storm of anger, frustration, and futility of what to make of life in the free world – post conviction.
I admit, I really underestimated all of it. I thought it would have been much easier, and this little felony hiccup would not have interfered with my life too much. Yeah… not quite.
All of a sudden, the most mundane and simplest of things turned out to be complex and problematic. Drama would ensue. Things were not happening for me as they used to and opportunities were sparse, and rejection was abundant everywhere.
Walking the straight path was a true test of will, too. I cannot tell you how tempting it was to go back to old ways. Ways that are by far easier, yet ironically put me in the position I now find myself in (anybody out there understands what I’m talking about). I found myself confused, depressed and tired of everything I attempted. I was over it. I quit.
You see, after a while of enduring the constant hardships associated with being a convicted felon, I started to adopt the mindset that I should just be happy with getting by. With a mere survival existence, as I was not allowed to prosper. That I should just face it, a better quality of life for someone like me was ridiculous, and that I was not being realistic.
Sadly, acceptance set in. Mind you, I was still resistant at first, but would slowly talk myself out of opportunities. I would say to myself Get real, they’re not going to hire me, I’m a felon. Screw it, I shouldn’t even waste my time.
I even went so far as to justify it in some meta-karmic way, that this was to be my punishment. That since I had been in trouble with the law, I did not deserve a better quality of life. Until one day after one of my many daily mental breakdowns, I got fed up of living like that. I was sick of carrying the constant pain around with me in life.
No, I was not about to take my life – quite the contrary, I wanted to create a better one. And even though in the eyes of some, I did not deserve a second chance, at least my family deserved better. I wanted more, and understood in order to get more, I had to give more. Mentally, physically, emotionally, spiritually. I had nothing more to give financially (damn lawyers).
I had to change up a few things in order to be the best version of myself. Clearly the biggest issue hindering my life was a weakened state of mind and belief system, as I did not believe in myself anymore. I will admit, up until this point, I was using the fact that I was a felon as an excuse for everything.
Because I’m a felon is why I cannot get a good job. Because I’m a felon is why I cannot have a nice house. Because I’m a felon is why nobody wants to hang out with me. Because I’m a felon is why I cannot take out the trash or do laundry. Well, you get the point. Point being that since I’m a felon I am always destined to have a miserable life. Which is absolutely not true.
Because I am a Felon is why I cannot get a good job… Okay. Maybe it will exclude you from certain fields or positions. Not like I wanted to be an astronaut anyways. And you must prepare yourself for lots of rejection, but you can and will get a good job. Maybe consider working for yourself and be your own boss. Go create your own good job. Give it some thought.
Because I am a Felon is why I cannot have a nice house… Where does it say that you cannot get a mortgage because you are a Felon. Nowhere, cause it does not exist. Sure there will be places that do not want to accept you due to restrictions on the community, however, skip the background checks, pool your resources, and work to own your own home.
*On a side note, I have been rejected at countless homes and apartment complexes, where large breed (prohibited) dogs were accepted, but I was not. Now ain’t that a bitch!!!
No Felons Allowed!
Because I’m a Felon is why nobody wants to hang out with me… No. Nobody wants to hang out with you because it’s depressing, seeing is how all you do is complain about life, saying how unfair it is because you are a felon.
You suck the enjoyment out of everyone else’s life and make them leave. That is why nobody wants to hang around you. Along with the mind, I worked on my body. Not for six pack abs or anything like that, but to just feel better about life and get my self-esteem up.
Life is way too long to go through it feeling and looking like garbage every day. Believe it or not, it takes a lot of energy to be a convicted felon and accept all the challenges that come with it. I did not want to be reliant on substances in order to deal with my stresses, as I had done for far too long. So, I started attacking my problems head on. The result: I lost 50lbs, and my confidence went sky high.
Now am I where I want to be physically, mentally, and financially – No, not yet.
Do I think I have all the answers – Hell no.
But I am extremely proud of how far I have come and all that I’ve learned along the way. I’d like to think that all the rejection, pain, and suffering endured, paved a road to be traveled with less roadblocks and detours for someone contending with legal challenges. Both my family and I have experienced so many crazy scenarios, setbacks, and issues on this journey, that you would think I was making it all up. Unfortunately, I am not.
Who Am I?
I am a Father, Husband, and Convicted Felon who enjoys helping others by way of entertainment and some useful information.
Why this site and what can THEEDUCATEDFELON.COM do for you?
I have completed 17,520 successful hours of house arrest, and an embarrassingly lengthy number of years on probation than I care to explain. All while paying my debt to society.
When I was at my worst, and all stressed out, I had wished there was a place I could have gone to in order to gain some perspective, motivation, and maybe even a laugh as a welcome distraction to the problems I was facing, rather than the cookie cutter shit I came across. I mean seriously, I’m good on the whole don’t do the crime if you can’t do the time analogy bullshit.
I created this site for men and women like you and me going through serious issues, and needing a healthier outlet for that stress, anger, and frustration. All with a common theme in mind: To attain a better quality of life after coming in contact with the criminal justice system.
My main goal is to inspire a reader to take charge of their life and find their inner strengths. Despite any legal hardships they may be experiencing. I have been there, overcome, and can provide the guidance and poor attempts at humor necessary to keep you from gargling a gallon of drain-o and ending your life. So whether it’s you or a loved one going through tough times, please feel free to take a look around my site, contact me, or follow me on social media.
Educate yourself on your situation, because nobody will do it for you. Stay well and out of trouble.
–The Educated Felon