[sum-bod-ees woch-ing mee]: Michael Jackson sang backup. Rockwell’s sister Hazel was married to Jackson’s brother Jermaine. Michael Jackson was at the height of his powers, and Rockwell knew he could get the song released if he could convince Michael to sing on it.
The House That God Has Forgotten Part 10: 22 Years and Counting.
First before we start… Happy Birthday to me! The big 43. People keep asking me if I feel different, just so you know. It feels like 42. 42 felt like you were getting older. Your lower back would ache when you woke up in the morning, and your face gets more wrinkles. Don’t let me forget your hair turns more grey. (which reminds me that eventually I need to dye my hair again again).
So that is what it feels like to be 43.
Anyway, I my friends watch you come into work, come in after lunch and watch you walk out the door. I study you. I know more about you than you think. I see what you eat for lunch, if you forgot to take your keys off and how that little package of Fisherman’s Friends does make the metal detector go off.
Yesterday I sat there and I saw you. You stopped by me and whispered:
“Keep on writing.” in a hushed voice.
We have a big secret. We have our own revolution.
I feel like a vigilant leader of a gang of activists. People that want to make a difference, or people that want someone to say what it really is what we all are thinking.
Which is a big compliment. Thank you.
From the bottom of my heart, thank you for reading my words and listening to what I have to say. For telling me to keep on writing and to not stop. For making me feel appreciated for something I had long given up hope to be able to do.
You see when I was younger I had ambitions to be a writer. I worked as journalist during the time I studied at the University, I majored in English and I had big dreams.
I wanted to write the great American novel.
It even when so far that I had a Phd in Literature working as an editor. (That ended up falling on my face, she felt in love with the words I wrote instead confused them with me. I had to end that writing team, sadly).
Don’t think I have not tried. I have tried. Books, short stories, poetry. Most of it seems so bad that I lose interest.
But now I have a forum. I have my blog. People actually read it, people comment on it and people listen to what I say.
And that my friends, is exciting for me beyond words.
I do not think anyone since a child says “Hey… I want to work in a jail, that is my dream job.”
We found our way here like refugees from the job market. We though that it was something to do, a job, a way to get a steady and 7 weeks of vacation (for me at least… I am old), and have a job that that is pretty stable.
I would not be lying to you if I did not say I am a little paranoid. That people higher up know that I am writing here, and that I know that I have this blog and that some of them are reading what I am writing.
Like I said earlier I am a rebel. A troublemaker.
With each word I quickly type here I have to think about a million things.
Don’t say a persons name.
Don’t talk about things that have to do with our obligations with security of people and things.
I can tell you that it is a million times easier to write a speech at a jail party that is held once a year than it is to write a blog post.
So we all know we do not take this job because it is something we dreamed of, but my big question is why did you take this job?
I myself got a job tip the other day for something else and I got scared. The House That God Has Forgotten has become my security blanket, that stuffed toy we held on to as 2 and 3 year olds.
The thing that you cold not get rid of and your parents eventually gave up and let you hold it all the time.
I say to myself that I am never going to find the schedule I have now that fits picking up and leaving my daughter at school on the other side of the city.
I want to leave The House That God Has Forgotten.
I am tired of not making any money here.
I am tired of knowing that this is all I will become in my life. I will become an operator in a control center for the rest of my working career. They are not going to send me to an office job to work extra (I feel this way personally because sometimes you just know when things are, or are not going to happen).
I am going to be that woman that is here until she is 65 (exactly 22 years from now to the day) doing the same thing day in and day out.
Making less money than new people.
And watching them run around The House That God Has Forgotten.
The House That God Has Forgotten will get older and it will be like the jail I worked at before.
I used to say that when you opened the door to the floor you could smell the smell of angst. The loss of hopefulness, It always happened when you would open that door. You could feel the old cigarette smell mixed with food.
I start to feel that smell when I walk To The House That God Has Forgotten. Walking by the gate, up from the stairs you can smell the kitchen coming out of the vents and you just know, this is not a happy place.
But it still does not smell like that smell of angst you smell when you walk into a high security prison. Even there it is more open.
22 years of watching you come and go.
22 years of looking at you coming in like robots in the morning and exhausted as you stand in that little place waiting for me to let you out and into freedom.
New bosses. New rules.
And like I said (at the rate I am going considering that I get the lowest pay raise of everyone that works where I work year after year. I will never catch up, no matter what I do.
No matter how much I have passion for the things I do above and beyond my job description. No matter how many letters telling my boss I deserve more money. No matter that postcard that hangs in my locker from that one inmate that thanks me for getting her into recovery. All of those things do not matter.
Maybe I wish I could make money. Write a fictional book about the life in The House That God Has Forgotten.
Maybe I wish that more than 100 people read what I have to say about what we go through and how we have it here.
Maybe I would love to work with my passion and follow my dreams.
Spread the word. Make the revolution be bigger. Don’t just do it for me that has 22 years left, but for everyone. Let your friends read this, tell your family and send your favourite posts to people that work at other jails and prisons. They can read my posts through e-mail or like my page on Facebook, or even add me as a friend there.
Make your voice heard, and if you think I am the one that can do it. Use me.
Everyone is watching me anyway. That I can already promise you.