I always believed I was destined for great things. I mean, not very many made it out of Milwaukee. I had managed to not only do that but made honors in every school I attended in my new home of Seattle. With my head on tight and a new dawn arising, I tempted myself with music, sports, and a plethora of other extracurricular activities. Everyone I met made it clear I was a positive light formed in a dark place.
We all know it’s the calm before the storm.
By the time I was fourteen, my dad had proved himself a raging alcoholic. I found myself following blindly in his footsteps. And then one night around a bottle of Svedka, my whole life changed. In my drunken and stumbling state, I found myself destined for red and blue.
“Face front.” No smile. FLASH. “To the left.” FLASH. The intake lady grips my fingertips and roughly rolls them over a lighted pad. And into a cold cell they throw me. I’m informed I’ll have twenty-four hours to see a judge.
It goes well. House arrest, he tells me. I abide a few slips in curfew, never missing a day of school, improving overall. Trips to the capitol to advocate and then BOOM: one little tiny slip-up. Back in jail court in twenty-four hours. I go before the judge confident in my release. I see my support, my attorney, teachers, mentors, probation officer . . . except this time she is not in support. “I believe house arrest should be denied. She’s a danger to herself, her parents and her community.” The judge agrees. And I sit facing possible JRA time destined for a fate so unknown to me I can’t even begin to imagine.