Some of us are in the early stages of court cases, others will spend their holiday traveling to jails and prisons for Thanksgiving visits. For some, finances and distance make holiday visits impossible. Some of our loved ones are already out of confinement, off-paper, but on the registry, free, but not really free. It can be difficult to be thankful. I am thankful that I’ve walked (well, maybe “crawled” is a better word) thru hell for several years now with our family’s situation, and we can finally see some light at the end of the tunnel. I’m thankful we’re still standing despite multiple tragedies that have occurred along the way. Despite some family and friends who have faded into the woodwork, I’m thankful for those that have stayed and supported us. I am thankful that there are people like those involved in the movement to change the registry, who don’t give up despite negative court battles and negative press. I am thankful that we have open forums to share our trials and tribulations with one another. Unless you’ve walked in our shoes, it can be hard to appreciate how thankful we are for things as simple as a letter or a phone call without static on the line from jail or prison. I am thankful that November is almost over, that there are only 6 weeks until the end of the year. Once the new year starts, the BOP will provide prisons with their yearly budget and prisoners will receive the “normal” amount of food they are entitled to, not the end of the year “rationing” that seems to take place no matter what prison they’re in. (Pepper-steak isn’t really Pepper-Steak when your plate contains only peppers,onions and rice.) The steak gets sold “separately” to inmates on the units by the kitchen workers. Everyone has their “hussle”. I am thankful that even though I am told that it is still cold, the heat has finally been turned on in the prison. I am thankful that my family member hasn’t had to see the prison dentist. (Old Yanker!) I’m thankful that there’s a list you can get on in prison to get your eyes examined. (Five years later, still waiting for that examinatiion.) But, there’s a list! So, for all of us out there that struggle with something to be thankful for this Thanksgiving, know this, we’re further along than we were yesterday and that’s all that matters when you’re fighting the good fight. Be thankful for the little things.
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