I met my puppy love at thirteen. He had lost his mother to cancer at the age of 7 and even though my parents are still legally married, I lost my father to alcoholism. My love needed a mothers figure, and I needed a father figure. We seemed to have tried to find that in each other and one way or another we understood that and made it work. He rebellious and his widowed elderly father could not control him, and apparently neither could the law. He spent most of his teenage years in and out of juvenile detention facilities. For 4 years we kept in contact through phone calls and mail.
I never felt he was learning a lesson. He’d just continue repeating the same offenses, returning him to these facilities. The police department didn’t care for the potential harm they were causing by looking the other way. From early teenage years into early adulthood no punishment seemed enough to change his ways. My eyes have opened up to see there are many like him who notice the carelessness and get lost. I began to acknowledge the lack of professionals aiding these offenders recovery. The judicial system had been allowing these forgotten felons fall through the cracks.
I grew up with a grudge against the judicial system for allowing him to continue to be addicted to drugs, to be mischievous, and the lacking efforts in becoming more involved. He is not a privileged special circumstance. Now there is even a proposition on the ballot to help overcrowding in jails. Non violent offenders will remain free, even though they broke a law. Neither he nor others like him see this as an opportunity to get better, but as a get out of jail free card. I have yet to figure out what will be the cause for change. However keeping in mind the many others like him, and using his experiences to have a story to tell, I look forward to a change. My efforts to help him have not gone unrecognized, even if I’m the only acknowledger; it gives me peace to comfort him when he comes down from his cloud. We all need somebody to hold us strong. I need strength to carry on along his side and his seeking comfort in me is my motivation.
Change can be introduced, as inspiration to improve lives, even if it’s just your own that changes. The willingness to care can be just as fulfilling for the giver as it is to the receiver, I believe that to this world you may only be one person, but live for that one person you mean the world to.
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