Incarcerated: 3 years
Taking care of my daughter Faith, who was born two months early, is my greatest accomplishment. She weighed less than three pounds and had meth in her system causing her even more complications. She was hooked up to hoses and wires, too many to count. I’ve always considered myself a pretty tough guy, but I cried like a baby at the sight of my daughter. She was so tiny and frail looking. Every breath was a struggle. With every visit I was expected to take on more duties. Feeding, bathing, diaper changes, and most important, I had to learn about machines that monitored her breathing and heart rate. It wasn’t any of those things that were a challenge. Not even learning CPR. It was stimulating her to eat no less than three ounces of formula every three hours. About two weeks into learning all these things, a light went off in my head. Faith would get extremely pissed when I changed her diaper. She fussed like mad when I used cold wipes to clean her up. So, I’d change her first thing instead of after her feeding and she’d eat like a little piggy. I can’t remember how many of the different nurses stood by to watch me begin what felt like the absolute scariest journey I would ever take. They each gave me a hug as I walked out the door. They actually clapped for me like I had won a medal or trophy in some sporting event. Things weren’t any less stressful, but she was eating what was required and going one and two on the regular. At home, the scariest part of it all is that no one would come to help me due to the fear that Faith might not make it. Looking back at this trying time in my life gives me such appreciation for the help I got along the way. I can’t give you the percentage of the good and bad I’ve done in this lifetime, but without a doubt, if I’m ever having a bad day, I remind myself of this moment I am so graciously proud of and thankful to have had the strength to overcome the greatest feat of my life. No matter how others may look down upon me because of my mistakes that put me in prison they can never take this memory away from me. Trophies and medals become old and tarnished but love never loses its shine!
Amazing. Keep it up. you are worth it.