It’s 4:00. Stop staring out there. Visiting hours are over and you can’t see the parking lot from here anyway.
Maybe next week.
Who am I kidding? They didn’t come today. They didn’t come last week. Or last month. Not even last year. They are never coming. Suck it up and deal, girl. They will never forget me, but they’ll never forgive me, either.
I broke their hearts, I know that. I didn’t mean to. I didn’t wake up one morning and decide, hey, I’m going to give my all to a lifestyle that will land me in a maximum security prison for women.
I wish I’d never taken that first hit off the pipe. Everybody else seemed to be having such a good time together. It was the first time I’d been invited to one of their parties and I didn’t want to be such a nerd that they’d never ask me again.
Nerd? Yeah, well, I am one, I guess. I was good at math, anyway. Although if I’d been as smart as everybody seems to think I am I wouldn’t have done what I did.
That’s all history now. To tell the truth, that first time was pretty amazing. I felt beautiful and cool. Funny, too. Everyone laughed at my jokes. Each time after that, it took more and more to feel as good. Pretty soon I ran out of money. Then I ran out of things to sell and Mom and Dad started noticing jewelry and cash missing.
You don’t have to be beautiful to make money on the streets. I developed a steady “clientele,” and kept myself supplied with the little white packets I could no longer live without.
Mom and Dad tried “an intervention,” but I ran away from them, leaving the house wearing nothing but panties and a ratty old sweat shirt. I’ll never forget Dad wailing at me to come back, that they loved me. My Dad, crying like that…when I think of it I want to die.
Time to stop staring out through the bars wishing I could get out.
There’s an old lady who comes and preaches in the prison chapel once a week. She tells us that knowing Jesus will make us “free on the inside.” She says the reason she comes to visit us is that Jesus tells her to, and she says whenever she visits us, she’s visiting him. I totally don’t get that. Does that mean Jesus–GOD!– is here in this hell hole?
Vera, the old lady I’m talking about, says Jesus can forgive sins—even murder—and wash me clean. It’s a little hard to believe. I’m filthy and what I did can’t be undone.
It’s Sunday evening, and Sergeant just called out chapel. Vera will be here soon. It’s time to stop watching for visitors who will never come. I think I’ll ask Vera if Jesus really is in here, is there any way I can meet him?