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If a loved one is not in a good space, I give them positive reinforcement and make them laugh. Then, tell them all the reasons I appreciate them and why they are a rockstar!

Saragoza, 43
Incarcerated: 14 years
Housed: California Men’s Colony, San Luis Obispo, California

My struggle began as a baby when my father was gunned down near where I was born. The judge threw the book at me and sentenced me to 335 years to life. The ultimate kicker, I was charged as an aider and abettor. I know what you’re thinking, and no I was nowhere near the crimes. My son was five months old at the time. I was destined for ten lifetimes in Pelican Bay’s Solitary Housing Unit (SHU). In 2013, we did a big hunger strike to end long term solitary confinement. I lasted a long 18 days and was released. Now I love to read and I have learned to remain positive and how to refocus my thought process to happiness, love, joy and prosperity. I was never a negative person and I was only a social drug and alcohol user. I exercise every day to clear my thoughts. I meditate every morning. I read positive spiritual material. I draw, write and listen to all types of music that takes me away from here 😜 I have become and enjoy being a motivator to those in my life. I’m into building people up in all aspects of life. I want to help them better themselves or their circumstances by giving genuine love and support. I’m happy being able to contribute to their happiness, to me that’s what love is. You know what I do if a loved one is not in a good space: I give them positive reinforcement. Then I make them laugh and tell them all the reasons I appreciate them and why they are a rockstar! As far as romantic love, well my superpower is to fall in love like it’s the first time all over again, every single morning I wake up. Yet, snail mail and 15 minute phone calls can’t compete with social media. So I have to fall in love with my imagination and dream woman. I remain steadfast on my journey to help others stay focused on positive and productive things. Thank you for your attention in reading my story and thoughts. I wish and want the best for everyone. Big love always ~ Santos

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