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Flowerbed of Freedom

A prisoner doing yardwork learns something about her own life path

During my active alcoholism, I faced serious criminal charges for various felonies. The last time I was arrested, I remember the police officers telling me that I was facing charges on five different felonies. I didn't even know with what I was being charged. I just knew that sad, empty, sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach told me my days of freedom were about to be severely limited. I was facing my third trip to the state penitentiary.

On a few occasions, I was shackled, cuffed and led across the street from the jail to the court house. Usually, I was told that I was a "hopeless and helpless case." I believed it. I had been to countless treatment centers and had many trips to jail, yet nothing ever seemed to work for any real length of time. I just couldn't stay clean and sober. I was told that I could be tried as an habitual offender with the possibility of serving a mandatory 30-year sentence in the state correction facility.

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