Letting Them Go

I have noticed since I have been in prison that people come and go out of our lives. We are dispensable to them. When we have something to offer, we are graced with their presence. When they have what they need from us, they are gone. I have to admit that it stings a little every time I get on here and another contact disappears. Its a continual reminder of my crime.
Usually that is the reason why someone decides to not communicate with me anymore. Just like the guys in here do. I’m so thankful that I am upfront and honest with everyone who asks me about my past. I have nothing to hide and I am transparent. Even when it hurts. Even when it costs me valuable friendships. At least I know that I was honest. At least I know that I was genuine. I gave them my all.
Of course, that is the nature of this place. Once you become a resident of any prison we are all of a sudden second or third class citizens if we are looked at as citizens at all. I have had a hard time getting people to look at us as even human. Its hard for a person to place themselves in our shoes, especially when they think they could never do the things we have done. I get it. I once thought that too. So did the guy who was texting his son and hit a lady running on the side of the street, manslaughter, 20 years. I know that it’s hard to identify with us. But its not like we are these inhuman monsters that are running around here satisfied with ourselves and our pasts. The main difference between us and you, you were lucky enough to not get caught. Not that a whole bunch of people have done what I have done. They haven’t. I have done awful things and was in a really bad mind set when I did them. I wasn’t myself and I let myself get there. That is what hurts the most, I had a choice. I have no excuses, it wasn’t the drugs or alcohol. I was mentally gone and I let that happen. 
I wanted to say to anyone who is reading this out there that I have very few people in my life. Like, I can count them on one hand. Its hard to talk to a guy like me. My past haunts you just as bitterly as it haunts me. It’s cool. But I was honest. I can’t change what I have done. I can’t change the past. I have however identified what led me here and have built a league of people to help me with that. I have brought those problems to the surface and have faced them head on. I have changed my entire life around. 
I am so thankful for the people in my life that know what forgiveness means, that know what it means to change and who have most of all taken the time to get to know who I am. Not who I was. Even more important, those people believe in me. They believe that I have a future. Do you have any idea how important that is? Do you know what that means to me? It means the world. It gives me hope. So yeah, people are coming and going, weekly. Using me for information and an ego boost to feel better about their sin. At least your not like me, right?
Well, I love you anyway. I forgive you anyway. I am still right here, waiting to develop a relationship with anyone who wants it. Anyone who dares to look at the man that I am. Thank You

Jeff Utnage