Friday, February 11, 2005

House Arrest

Hi All!

News from your friendly incarcerated blogger.

Sorry for not posting sooner. I turned myself in to the Ramsey County Workhouse on Monday. Every indication was that my fear of spending a couple of nights there was warranted, but my high-buck lawyer finally did something for me, and with a few pulled stings I was out by mid-afternoon.

A plainclothes cop arrived at my door after dinner and got me hooked up to my 75-foot invisible fence.

Let's see now. I have 2 months left on a stayed order of commitment with frequent visits from my case worker. 6-months at St. Peter or Willmar if I mess up.

I have 90-days of house arrest with random visits from field workers to administer breathalizer tests. If can be perfect till the eleventh hour of the 89th day. "Celebrate" early and, it's six months in the workhouse.

I need 60 more days of sobriety to be considered for the liver transplant list.

My drivers license is suspended until May 27.

I guess those are enough strictures to keep this stubborn independent in line for awhile. I look at everything as a golden opportunity to work on my new life. I try not to focus on the restraints, but to work at getting better on my own, as if the outside influences aren't even there.

I have spent the last few days adjusting to the cigarette pack stapped to my ankle. There are sure alot of routine things I never thought twice about doing. Now I have to remind myself that I can't. No walking over to Buffalo Wild Wings for Trivia and the refillable pop cup. No bringing mis-delivered mail to my next door neighbor. No hitting Cub for bread and milk.

They let me go to treatment, church, AA, medical appointments and that's about all. If I was employed, I could certainly go to work.

I wonder how Hailie Selassie felt. I hope I don't die in custody under suspicious circumstances, but it my always being underfoot may drive my long-suffering wife to consider dire actions.

This blog is going to be one of those newly discovered "politics free" much as I can help it anyway.

I will be telling tales gleaned from the remarkable life I've led since I went to St. Joe's emergency room on October 3, 2004.

In closing today, I offer a bit of wisdom gleaned from treatment this week. Don't worry, I won't become another Jack Handey, but I think this is kinda cool.

I will try to capture the gist of what I gleaned from one of my many teachers, a dynamic fellow named Sheldon Lightfoot, a black guy from Ohio, who emerged from years of hell and started his life 18 years ago at 40. Now he runs Alliance Clinic, a methadone treatment center on University just west of KSTP. My continuing care meetings are held in the building under the moniker of Avalon Prospect Park. Enough of that. Here's Sheldon:

"The past is damned done been and gone. It's only a thought and you can blow it off. The future ain't happened yet and there ain't a damned thing we can do about it. See, the past and the future ain't real. The only place we should be in -- the only thing we can control, is the present. You know why they call it The Present? 'Cos it be a gift from God -- and what we do with it is our present to God. Am I makin' any sense?"

Makes sense to me, Sheldon.



Blogger learningthehardway said...

Thanks Sheldon. I have had such a battle, was on three mos house arrest Ramsey County for a DUI spent 1 night in thwe workhouse then I went to treatment at Hazelden and one night last week last week drank violating my probation. My PO tells me I'll be going to the work house and I am so sick at the thought of it I can hardly stand. Anywhere from 30-60days. I want to die and feel as though I've "blown it". My email

6:10 PM  

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