“I am going to leave prison a better person”
Although I made some very bad decisions in my life I am not 56 and stupid. I am dyslexic, and as I learned only through the final stages of my sentencing, hyper-manic as well. I accept full responsibility for my self-destructive behavior, but the enlightenment and understanding of hyper-mania shed a lot of light on my roller-coaster life and frequent toxic behavior. Add to all of this a dash of fear of failure and an underlying sense of unworthiness – it’s little wonder I ended up imprisoned.
In my late teens I started looking for the magic formula of success and prosperity. Over the next forty years or so I read hundreds of self-help books, attended dozens of seminars, went through countless training and traveled to some pretty interesting places to meet some very strange people, all in pursuit of anything that would get me off my self-destructive roller-coaster and bring a sense of belonging, peace and stability into my life.
I learned a lot and each adventure drove me to bigger and crazier situations. But each time at some point I would start to self-destruct and implode, hurting not only myself but everyone around me as well.
Looking back, it was obvious I showed all the signs of A.D.D. and severe chemical imbalances. It was January 2011 when I was finally diagnosed with hyper-mania and began medical treatment. I was finally starting to see through the fog.
“PathwaysLinked has had a huge impact on my life…live with a purpose every single minute; every moment… This is helping me realize that I am whole and have what it takes to have peace, joy and fulfillment.”
It was not until I arrived at Moshannon Valley Correctional Center (MVCC) that things really started to change. There I was able to take the time to educate myself on my condition and, more importantly, got off of the drugs that were only damping down my symptoms and not fix the underlying issues. From November 2011 to May 2012 I slowly weaned off of my meds and started to understand the underlying issues of hyper-mania. I can say now, 70 months later and drug free, I sleep like a baby and have no problems getting eight hours a night, and I no longer have a racing head.
Now PathwaysLinked is the result of my accumulated life experience and my ongoing journey in healing my own life. After discovering that there were no prison programs designed to actually help inmates change their lives, I felt if I was going to leave prison as a better person than I came in, it was going to be up to me.
It was obvious that one could learn a lot about crime and how to beat the system, but try and become a better human being – not a chance.
It took me the better part of a year to create and get approved (by both GEO and the BOP ) a program called “Paradigm Thinking.” I just could not risk spending 80 months in prison and not come back healthier and, just simply put, a better person.
It’s important that I give a huge amount of credit to Chaplain Roberts in his ongoing pursuit of Biblical truth and the impact he has had on my life and my recovery. He is one of several third party individuals that help with and influence the content of PathwaysLinked .