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Inside Out

Inside Out

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Inside Out

Lunghezza:
159 pagine
3 ore
Editore:
Pubblicato:
Dec 17, 2010
ISBN:
9781456701079
Formato:
Libro

Descrizione

This book is a work of realistic fiction, based on the factual life conditions of countless individuals to provide reading enlightenment. It is my hope and prayer that after reading this book society will commit to rethinking its look at ex-offenders and what positive impact they can bring to society--- if they are given a fair chance.


Danielle grew up confused and feeling abandoned. She moved from place to place; first with her mother, then a group home, then her grandmother, then her father. She grew up feeling that she was unwanted by everyone. Her father and step mother struggled with addiction; her biological mother may have struggled with the same types of issues. She had to live with the guilt of fatal choices she made in her young life which carried through to her adulthood. Danielle struggled with addiction and criminal activity throughout her own life. She spent a large portion of her life in battling the judicial system. She endured physical abuse as a child and as an adult. Death seemed to frequent her life and all those she thought loved and care about her seem to pass away. Her life events seem to finally open her eyes to making a change in her life. When Danielle lost her father she wanted to get high for the first time since her release from prison. She didn't know what to do with her emotions. She sat in the cold hospital emergency room and thought about her life and what using drugs again would mean for her. She had come so far and she didn't want to lose everything she had worked so hard for. Since her release from prison she had gained her family's trust and learned to trust herself. Rather than jump up and give in to her moment of weakness.. she waited.


Danielle discovered that taking away the drugs was only half of her battle. She realized that living life without drugs and criminal activity was the small step to changing her thoughts feelings and actions. She just had to figure out how to make those changes successfully.

Editore:
Pubblicato:
Dec 17, 2010
ISBN:
9781456701079
Formato:
Libro

Informazioni sull'autore

MoDena Stinnette lives in the suburbs just outside of Chicago, Illinois. MoDena currently works as a Clinical Supervisor for the Gateway Foundation, one of the premiere substance abuse treatment providers in the state of Illinois. She works with adolescent and adult clients who have substance dependence and mental health diagnosis. She practices the Client Centered treatment approach as she believes you have to meet each individual where they are currently motivated in order to achieve a successful outcome. MoDena has evolved into an advocate for victimized, lost and abused people across America that are working toward making life changes and successful reintegration into society. MoDena received her Undergraduate degree in Behavioral Science with a concentration in Sociology and Psychology. She received her Graduate degree in Business Administration focusing on Organizational Management. She currently holds the following Illinois certifications; Certified Reciprocal Alcohol and other Drugs Counselor (CRADC), Mental Illness and Substance Abuse (MISA I) Qualified HIV Early Interventions Counselor (QHEIC). She also volunteers with the Illinois Department of Corrections through speaking engagements and special projects. She is currently working on her next novel entitled The Desired Effect.

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Anteprima del libro

Inside Out - MoDena Stinnette

them.

Dedication

To all of the people that have been cast out from society due to addiction, incarceration, and life struggles—this is your voice---- Never give up on YOU!!

This is especially to the women of Decatur CC in Illinois.

Contents

Dedication

Acknowlwdgement

Inside Out

Epilogue

Questions

About the Author

Acknowlwdgement

ABOVE ALL ELSE I acknowledge God for undying support, strength, and direction in all my life, in all I do. My family, who believes in me and all my dreams and have stood by me through the bad times and held me up until times got better: Tootie, Missy, Deanice, Skeeta, Jimmy, Kasey, Ajonay, Maquon, Jazmine, Jasmin, Jonathan, and the loves of my life Baby Jon and Eniyah Marie. I will be the first to admit that without all of you, there is no me!!!!

For my best friend forever Donell, you were able to survive putting up with my many doubts and insecurities. The late nights of re-writes, the frustration and the victories. For that I thank you. Thank you for having my back 110- in all I say, think, and do--for seeing my vision and supporting it. I love you in spite of myself.

RIP State Representative Eddie Washington –1953—to 2010 my personal cheerleader.

This book was born from my strong belief that people can change. Change will come once an individual decides that change is necessary. I wrote this book to raise awareness in this society. We are such an unforgiving nation when it comes to criminal activity and making wrong choices yet we allow criminal minded leaders reign over our governments and our corporations. One societal issue that is of great concern to me is the continued rise of recidivism rates within the American substance abuse treatment centers and penal systems. More and more individuals are released from institutions only to be re-incarcerated within a few years. Throughout my educational journey I have researched numerous aspects of the penal systems and the issues that face offenders and addicts and once they have been released. I have researched the practices, processes and statistics for all the states in the US and it is alarming to realize how we, as a nation, turn our backs on our own fallen members. Many struggles faced by these individuals are employment, education, housing and support networks. It seems that society has turned its back on this growing epidemic. Largely, individuals are responsible for their own rehabilitation however a portion of that responsibility to assist them rests upon society as a whole. The view of the at-risk population has become skewed. I hope that Inside Out will broaden the societal perspective about individual circumstance and how individuals can and do change. Inside Out is an ideal story; unfortunately circumstances do not play out this way for the average person. I have encountered individuals that have overcome enormous odds. There is a misconception that there is no turning back once you have been labeled or convicted. There are thousands of people that have spent major portions of their lives in and out of institutions; until one day, life changed for them. Not only did life change but their thought processes changed, their lifestyles changed, and so did their spirit. For some, the new journey in life was dramatically surreal. I hope this book will open society’s eyes to the heart and soul of a person rather than the mistakes they have made. In some cases the real story behind some individual behaviors are a matter of upbringing and circumstances beyond ones own control. I also hope to bring some humanization to the multitude of individuals that have been cast out due to an unfortunate chain of life events. The growing rate of recidivism is an epidemic. There were 2,299,116 inmates in American prison systems in 2007. There were over 1 million in treatment. The numbers continue to rise each year. Our real quest as a society is to assist the ex-offenders to reclaim their lives and become a positive force in society. Some individuals decide to take their chances and re-build their lives--- from the inside out.

Inside Out

PULLING MY LIFE TOGETHER has been one incredible journey. It’s amazing to think that I spent the latter portion of my teens in prison and the major portion of my twenties, in prison. People ask what brought about a change in me when all signs pointed to my life ending in tragedy. I was tired of feeling like I was spectator in my own life. I was ashamed to have judges tell me I was a menace to society especially when my heart didn’t fit that assumption. I was angry that a state paid attorney could tell me my life would never amount to anything even when I knew it would and I’d I would have to accept it. Some of these people say I created the monstrosity of what used to be my life. I don’t agree with that. I am responsible for the choices I made but I am not responsible for what was inevitably the circumstance of a life I was born into without a choice. I just want to tell my story so that maybe people will believe that everyone that suffers through addiction, incarceration and other not so normal life conditions, are not lost forever. My name is Danielle Marie Parker and this is my life.

I remember being with my mother in a basement apartment. It always seemed so shadowy, dank, and cold. Mother said the décor was early orange and milk crate. Our living room was small; we had off white crates that served as end tables to hold up the lamps without shades to cover the bulbs. There was one long couch in the living room that had to be covered with a sheet because it was red in color and tattered. The television sat atop four sturdy milk crates that were all different shades of blue. Mother draped an off white sheet across the milk crates so the color would not clash with the room. Our kitchen was a stone’s throw away from the living room with nothing to divide the two rooms. The kitchen table was a piece of board that straddled six off white orange creates with a white sheet covering the wood. We had to be extra careful when eating at the table otherwise it would tip over with too much weight on either side. There was one bedroom with two single beds and one dresser with two broken drawers which I shared with my sister Bernadine. Mother and I would watch television and eat Ho- Ho’s until my sister Bernadine came home from school or sometimes we would go next door to visit with my grandmother Burney, who was my mother’s mother.

Next door at Burney’s house it was well lit with sound and movement. It was airy and welcoming. The living room had matching furniture; a gold couch and love seat. There was recliner in the living room positioned directly in front of the floor model television set which belonged to my grandfather, Papa. The carpeting was plush and a lighter shade of gold than the furniture. There were two bedrooms located directly across from one another. Each bedroom had queen sized beds along with matching dressers. The kitchen was located toward the rear of the house. This was my favorite room. There was a huge oak wood table with matching chairs. The curtains were olive green and the floor was hard wood. The refrigerator and deep freezer were light green in color. In the basement there was a billiard room and a bar with high barstools. There was a floor model television back by the bar also. In the basement and off to the side was a huge laundry room with a table to fold clothes.

My grandmother worked 3rd shift as a nurse. I loved to see her in her all white uniform and white shoes. I made it a habit of playing doctor with her blood pressure cuff and stethoscope. She had the most gorgeous salt and pepper hair I have ever seen and moles all over her face. She was fair skinned and had a smile to light up a room. Papa was a retired railroad worker. He was so skinny. I never understood why, because he ate a lot. Papa was dark skinned with gray hair and wore glasses. He was kind and quiet until Burney and he started arguing. Papa sat around watching sports and drinking beer all day. Occasionally he would cook a t-bone steak. I have never, since his passing, tasted a steak as delicious—and he cooked it in a toaster oven. He said it taste better than broiling it in the stove. Burney was the greatest. I remember her cooking all the time while she sipped on her Christian Brothers brandy—a little nip er snort is what she called it. Whenever either of them sent me in the kitchen to fix them a drink, or grab a beer, I would be sure to taste it first to make sure it met their standards.

When I began school, I had to be around four years old during this time, I lived with my mother. Her real name was Charlotte but everyone called her Big Red. She was the most beautiful woman I have ever known. She had long straight hair, and skin so light it was almost white. She could sing well. Each morning she woke me up with a song. She liked Billie Holiday’s, Good Morning Heartache. She played those songs on the old record player every day. My favorite song was, My man don’t love me, treats me oh so mean… I would sing that song all the time. To this day, especially when I have relationship issues, those words fill my head.

I enjoyed living next door to Burney and Papa. Mother often left us with them when she went out to do whatever it was she did. Most of the time, she would leave early and come home late. I don’t remember her ever having a job, but she sure was gone a lot. Things were great during this time and all seemed right with the world. I would have liked mother to be around more often, but when she was around I felt close to her and loved.

One day my world changed. Mother and I were sitting in the living room while she braided my hair. A knock came at the door which interrupted our day. When mother opened the door there was a tall creepy looking dude standing there with a huge smile on his face. He wore a three piece suit and a fedora on top of his hair. He had scary looking eyes and a sinister mustache. Beneath his hat I could see his long hair was curled at the ends. Mother had not introduced us. Instead she sent me to my room where I stayed for the rest of the morning. They sat at the kitchen table and talked and laughed. I swear when I looked at him after he took his hat off he had horns atop his head and he was a frightening sight to me. From that day forward I was sent next door to Burney’s every time he showed up. Bernadine and I named this creature, Dude.

Life was altered significantly for Bernadine and I after that man showed up at our door. We ended up moving across town far away from Burney and Papa. Dude moved in with us and now the room Bernadine and I shared had a lock on the outside of the door-- and every night that door was locked. Our new house was decorated a little differently than the last. There were three bedrooms. Mother and dude shared a room and the other room was for Dude’s business. I never quite knew what his business was but that room was off limits. The living room was another room that was off limits. It was decorated beautifully with all white furniture. Even the cocktail table and the end tables were white wood. There was a nice floor model television set in the living room that Bernadine and I never had the opportunity to turn on. As a matter of fact, Dude’s orders were that we, the children, were never to enter the living room except to dust and clean up. We still had our same single twin beds and broken down dresser in our room. The only addition to our room was a small grey black and white television with a broken antenna. Mother and Dude had an enormous queen size bed with three matching dressers and a dressing table for mother. In the kitchen, stood a gigantic refrigerator with double doors and a glass table for eating, the chairs matched the table too.

My other grandmother, Nana started coming to that house more often. She was our father’s mother. She had long blue-black hair and looked like one of those Indians I saw in the movies. Her skin was an olive color and very smooth. Nana walked with an air of regality and confidence. She lived in an entirely different city but it seemed like her and Burney showed up every day. Each time they showed up, they brought gifts for me and Bernadine. They sat around and talk to us at the kitchen table. They would ask questions about school, homework and what we did for fun. Nana would always lean across the table and ask are they treating you right? Our answer was always the same, yes Bernadine and I both knew that any other answer would cause us both a lot of trouble. It seemed like dude did not like it when my grandparents came over because when they left he and Mother would start yelling at each other.

We ended up moving again. This time we got two massive dogs; Afghans. They shared a room and bed with Bernadine and me even though we had three bedrooms. The dogs were pushy and took up too much space in our room. They slobbered everywhere, barked a lot and sometimes peed in the floor. We didn’t dare complain about any of it though because we did not want to get into trouble. Bernadine had to wake up early in the morning and walk them by herself. Once Papa found out about this he parked his 1974 white Chevy Impala outside of the house every morning and walked the dogs while Bernadine sat safe and warm in his car.

I finally started kindergarten. Bernadine and I left for school at the same time but I returned home early in the afternoon. No one was allowed to come to our house, unless specifically requested to be there. Dude ruled the house. We could not eat, sleep, play, or do anything unless he said so. At night we would hear mother arguing with him and we would hear our names but then we would hear a slap or a bang and then mother crying. We could not come out of our room because the door was locked from the outside not to mention we were both afraid to try and jiggle the door because Dude might start yelling at us as he often did. One night Bernadine and I vowed to each other we would never have children of our own because we didn’t want them to go through what we were going through with Mother and Dude. I got in a lot of trouble

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