13 Months + 3 Days

Robin here. I finally got mail from KC today! Two letters, and she included a blog post in one of them. I’ll pass along any comments you leave. 

Hello from jail! So glad that Robin is able to post for me and that she gave you guys an update about my sentencing. Monday (sentencing day; this was written last week) was obviously awful. The victim did not show up, so unfortunately I did not get to apologize to her in person. Someone read a statement from her. She and her husband have forgiven me, but her family is still really angry. I wish we could have talked in person. I hate that I still don’t have a face to her name.

It took me some time, but I was able to read my full page-long statement to the judge/court. I could hear my family and friends crying as I read it. My lawyer hugged me afterwards. The judge acknowledged my 30 amazing letters of support/character and my achievements since the accident, but showed zero leniency. Six months in this hell hole, license suspended for three years, and three years probation. Even the women I live with here are in utter shock. I’m the only one not here for drugs. I’ve done nothing but rehabilitate myself since the accident, and now I’m taking enormous steps backwards.

My alcoholic thinking got the better of me the first two days here. It was screaming in my head, throwing toddler-style tantrums. I actually cursed my efforts to get well, all the time I spent in counseling, in treatment, in AA. Hundreds of hours felts squandered. In my head the court system didn’t give a shit if I was passed out in a gutter somewhere as they certainly didn’t care that I was a year+ sober

It’s amazing how fucked up our thinking is. I was angry at how hard I worked to turn my life around and achieve sobriety. In reality, all that hard work kept me from having a nervous breakdown these past two months. It’s kept me sane. There is no easier, softer way. This gift of sobriety is something I will have to work hard to maintain for the rest of my life. I have to take it one day at a time, just like this sentence. Looking forward only causes anxiety and stress.

The first couple days here were obviously awful. My body, heart, and mind were in shock. To make matters worse, I had to wait a full week until today (Monday) to go to commissary. All I had for a week was one change of clothes, one blanket (it’s freezing here!), a toothbrush, toothpaste and soap. No comb, no shampoo, no pens, paper, snacks, coffee. Thankfully some of the women here helped me out by lending me a comb and shampoo, making me a cup of instant coffee or handing me an apple or a couple cookies. Finding a hair tie under my bed the second day was akin to winning the lottery!

My body is already bruised from my bed. We have a thin bedroll on metal. For the first time in my life I’ve been thankful for not being a petite woman! I can’t imagine how much more painful my bed would be without my extra padding. The food is terrible. Salty and processed, zero fresh vegetables. My fresh fruit is limited to an apple or small orange every other day. The air conditioner freezes us out and we all shiver at night in our metals beds with one blanket. But I have a roof over my head, daily access to a shower, food in my stomach (even if it is gross), and I have the support from so many amazing people. This sucks, but it could be so much worse, you know?

Will send another update for Robin next week. Hope you are all well. I miss you all. Enjoy some fresh air, sunshine, and a salad for me.

 

 

 

An update

I was really hoping I wouldn’t have to make any posts. However …

I’m Robin, the best friend Kristina mentioned a few days ago. Although we didn’t work this out in advance, it occurred to me today that I should give an update on Monday’s events.

As Kristina anticipated, the judge gave her the full six-month jail sentence, minus two days for time served. It took all damn day with those of us who couldn’t be with her texting one another in fits of anxiety and hope, until D. got in touch with the outcome.

He said she was strong while reading her statement in court. Having been friends for nearly 14 years, since she was an undergrad, I know how deep her fear of public speaking goes. To be able to stand in court and read her statement … I am in awe of her.

As Kristina mentioned previously, D. will be manning an email address for mass updates and Paypal donations. I will be posting updates here as she snail mails them to me.

This will most likely be the only post I make that’s not a transcription of Kristina’s words, as it would be so, so, so easy for me to use this as a platform for the grief I’m experiencing. It’s there every single time I reach for my phone to text her. It was there all afternoon when I walked into a video shoot by a member of the Flaming Lips at a record store. How can I possibly experience something of that level of fantastic weirdness without sharing it with Kristina? If she doesn’t know, did it even really happen? It doesn’t feel like it.

She didn’t give me the URL for her blog until two months ago. Today was the first time I read it. At the time I told her I wasn’t going to read it because I wanted her to have this private space, and I knew she’d share with me the things she wanted me to know. Tonight, I scrolled through, read some posts, and marveled at what a truly wonderful person she is. I always knew this. Even when I ended our friendship for a chunk of a year because I couldn’t handle the effects of her drinking while trying to manage my own postpartum depression. I knew she was still so good, right down to her core. That’s never been more clear to me than it is now.

But you’re not here to read my shit, and this is the last of it I’ll dump. The support Kristina’s found through the sober blogging community has meant the world to her. It’s given her that boost that only true empathy can provide. I’m honored that she asked me to update her blog while she’s away.

We got through May, 2013. We’ll get through this.

Kristina and me on my 40th birthday.

Kristina and me on my 40th birthday.

Sneaking into a Wilco sound check.

Sneaking into a Wilco sound check.

Two of my very favorite people - Kristina and my daughter.

Two of my very favorite people – Kristina and my daughter.

392 Days

Here’s hoping I can get some rest tonight. Whatever happens, I will survive. Hell, I’m already a survivor! And I’m so proud of myself for the changes I’ve made in my life. My sobriety is a precious gift, and it will help me to get through whatever life throws at me tomorrow. Say a prayer or send me some good vibes if you can. Hopefully I will be back here with you all sooner than than later. Until next time…

More on My Contact Info

Hey all! I should have been a bit more clear yesterday about the email address, but I was bouncing around in Anxiety-Land.

I will obviously not be managing the email address if I am in jail (ha). The address (keepkcsane@gmail.com) will be used for info purposes only and for PayPal donations. D. will be using it to send out my mailing address once we have it (I believe it has to include my inmate ID#). He will also send out info on the sentencing and general info if needed. Obviously these will be mass emails. He had to deal with my friends and family after my car accident and was so overwhelmed. He couldn’t keep up, people kept thinking he was withholding information when he wasn’t, blah blah blah. So at this point if you haven’t heard anything, it’s because there’s nothing yet to report. Also, it may take a day or two for him to report back on the sentencing. He’s going through an extremely hard time now as well.

So I think I’ve covered the bases. If you wish to send me a card or drop me a letter, that would be wonderful and much appreciated. If you have any questions, please post them here and I will do my best to answer them between now and Sunday night!

Many thanks!

KC

390 Days

 

I’m getting a bit freaked out here. I need to come up with a statement to address to the court, along with a statement to my victim. I’ve not met her, only her husband. I think about her every day, and yet, I don’t even have a face to place to Her Name. The fact that she will be in attendance at my sentencing (most likely) has thrown me into a bit of a tailspin. I’m worried that I will not be able to speak, that I will be only a shaking, sobbing mess.

A few moments ago, I finished my resignation letter to my boss. Surreal day here. I came in late, because I had one last session with my counselor this morning. I MADE MY COUNSELOR CRY. Not once, but several times. Is this real life?

Adding to the surrealness (not a word, I know) is that at this moment, people from across the globe are coming to my city, to the university where I work (for three more hours anyway), to gather and celebrate the founding of Alcoholics Anonymous. It’s all right here, right in front of my face, they are on campus with me right now, and I will be missing out. That kind of kills me. I’ve got so much to do right now and so many obligations this weekend that I will miss this annual gathering. Crazy, right?

OH. And the whole world (well, some folks) are shitting themselves over season two of Orange is the New Black premiering on Netflix today. I finally got sucked into the show around Christmas, when my legal crap became a bit more…real. And yeah, I’m dying to see what happens since there was a cliffhanger (what happens to Pennsatucky? will I have my own Pennsatucky to deal with?), but I’m not going to tune in this weekend. Too much to do, too many people to see, hits too close to home. I’m already feeling paranoid about my first naked squat and cough on Monday.

For those of whom that would like to send me a card or a letter while I am away, a separate email account has been created. It is:

keepkcsane@gmail.com

From that account you can get my address in jail. Woohoo! And an FYI…that account will not be checked everyday. I have a feeling it will be overwhelming for D. who is in charge of it. So please…be patient if you do send an email to that account!

For those of you who are feeling generous, you can throw me a fiver with that email address (or whatever amount you choose) through Paypal. It will be taken out of my account and used toward my commissary funds. You know, exciting stuff: notebooks, stamps, tampons. Joy! And believe me how terrible I feel to ask people to help supply me with commissary funds or money in general. My friends tell me to shut the hell up when I bring that up. I’m terrified about my financial situation if I am in jail for six months especially since my job will be gone.

One day at a time, right?

And just a quick note to let you all know how much your amazing/sweet/supportive comments make my day(s). I really cannot thank you all enough.

 

388 Days

“I’m losin’ it!”

I’ve been on the phone most of today, and I loathe being on the phone. Even worse is being on the phone with credit card companies. I need to call my main student loan company at some point this week, but I’m going to really have to dig deep to deal with them.

For my second round of lawyer’s fees in January, I had to get a few credit cards to handle the $7500. Due to my student loans totaling in the millions (I kid! kind of…), a few medical bills in collections and blah blah blah, it was hard for me scrounge that kind of cash together. No one wanted to give me a credit card, but I found a few suckers out there. Or rather I’m the sucker…but I digress. One of my cards has zero auto-pay options on their website. Infuriating! Even more infuriating was the conversation I had today, about wanting to sign up for minimum payment auto-pay. The guy just didn’t get it. “Oh, but you can just pay from your account online each month!” Yeah, I get it. That’s what I do now, but what if I do not have access to my account? Same response. OKAY, WHAT IF I AM IN JAIL AND CANNOT ACCESS MY ACCOUNT? CAN’T I JUST SIGN UP TO HAVE AUTO-PAYMENTS SO I DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT THIS? Same fucking response. I was so frustrated that I hung up on the guy. Guess I need to call back and try for a supervisor. Need to did deep for that, too.

Yesterday, I left work early for a teeth cleaning. When I was done, I had a voice mail from my union rep: HR is refusing to allow me a leave of absence for serving jail time. Since my meeting a week ago, I’ve kind of anticipated this. It sucks, but again, my boss is doing everything possible to get me back into my position. It takes forever to hire people at the university, so if I am gone for six months, hopefully I will be able to reapply and sneak back in. HR insists that my record will not hinder my application process. It’s out of my hands, so I’m not going to worry about it. Instead, I am going to fret as I write my letter of resignation and pack up my office a bit and deal with leaving here on the sly by Friday afternoon.

I can’t believe it’s Wednesday already…slow down, time!

I keep having these ridiculous thoughts about jail. As in, I was painting my toenails the other night and thought “Will I be allowed to cut my toenails in jail (I have the lovely habit of biting my fingernails)? Or will someone do it for me?” Will I be allowed to use nail clippers in maximum security jail? Could they be used as a weapon? Yeah, this is the shit I think about.

7 Days to Go…

*gulp*

The final countdown begins…

My weekend was good, and I am feeling a lot less frantic than when I posted last. Going to three AA meetings between Saturday and Sunday helped a lot. Whenever I am freaking out internally, AA takes me out of that state. It’s amazing how much it helps to talk to people who get it, and have been through similar situations. I spoke about what I am currently going through at a meeting yesterday (my voice wavering the entire time – my shyness tends to keep me from participating much during discussion meetings), and I had a line of people wanting to talk to me afterward. All folks who had been in my shoes, and lived to talk about it. That sounds dramatic, but sometimes this feels like The End of the World. That helped so much! I felt lighter afterwards. My problems are still there, but talking to others who’ve been there helped to ease the burden a bit.

The weather was perfect this weekend, and I got to spend a lot of time with one of my best friends yesterday and eat some really yummy food. I am currently on the “Going to Jail Diet” – meaning I’m not eating ice cream for breakfast, but I’m eating whatever the hell I want and not feeling bad about it. I keep joking to my friends that I will get scurvy in jail, because I loooooove all fresh fruits and veggies. I will panic when there is a lack of fruit in my house and I need to go shopping. So me and jail food will not be simpatico. I like flavor! Yesterday I had amazing strawberry-rhubarb french toast at my favorite local brunch spot. The food there is phenomenal, but I tend to not get there as often as I’d like because it can be pricey. Since my friend treated me to brunch, I treated myself to a lemon curd tart from their bakery. I ate it last night, and it was so good it almost killed me. Death by lemon curd tart! What a way to go.

Okay, quick post but I just wanted to check in. OH! And a heads up…if I am in jail for a while, my best friend Robin has agreed to write the occasional update on my behalf. I’ll mail her a letter with my update, and she can post it for me. WOOT!