“When I get home”
“WHEN I GET HOME I WILL Wow where do I start a woman incarcerated for over a decade. I figure there are so many others in my position who have a wish list, bucket list of things we would like to do. Getting involved in, being apart of and just accomplishing things. I want to first and foremost join a good church as a Christian that is the basis of my sobriety. I cannot contribute anything to anyone if I’m not on a straight path. Reunification with my family and starting over but never forgetting the lose of life its insane to think that it took for someone to lose their life unnecessarily in order for me to realize how fuck up I was. And for that I owe it to others to share my life in hopes that thru God it can save someone. Someone said to me why can’t you just come and re invent yourself and move on? How can I act like this never happened and move on acting as if this was some nightmare that I just awoke from. No I could never forget therefore in helping others in turn I’m helping myself to move forward.”
“How Does Parole Eligibility Promote Safety in Pennsylvania”
How does parole eligibility for people serving DBI promote safety or reduce crime in Pa. This subject so repetitious, yet so important because it drives the point home to why we should be given a chance at freedom. But why must we be put into these categories as if civilians should be given the right to own pit bulls. We should not concentrate too much on the crime but instead on the rehabilitation that a person has been thru in one’s years of incarceration. Whether or not letting life serving people out of jail will benefit society or not is such a hypothetical question and almost impossible to ponder upon, because each individual has their own, agenda and focus. Of course I feel the majority of civilians serving life have a wealth of guidance to offer and counsel that is priceless. YES without a doubt our real life experiences can absolutely scared straight those who are on the wrong path. PRISON is REAL!!!!! Will everyone who is blessed to get a second chance be on a crusade to fight crime and defeat incarceration? “REALISTICALLY NO” For isn’t it in human nature to have flaws and make mistakes. But the real food for thought here is how inhumane it is to keep a person who has redeemed themselves from their past, to be kept locked away for decades without a single glimpse of light in their situation because of Death by Incarceration. Or will it only come into effect when life sentences spill out into society and start to touch those who have elevated themselves above life’s traumas? Almost like the heroin surge that is no longer a inner city, under privilege, minority, poor persons problem. God willing once the law is changed then singularity, those who have worked hard and sincerely will be given a chance to prove themselves fit for society or that society would be fit for them!!!!
HOPE, FAITH, AND SECOND CHANCES
Psalm 107-1-2 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good! His faithful love endures forever. Has the Lord redeemed you? Then speak out.
I was born in North Philadelphia on June 14, 1968, my mother was only 17 years of age, when she had me and she passed away at the delicate age of 19, I was only 2 (two years old).
I was left in the care of my biological father and his mother. The house that I called home was actually a “speakeasy” for those who may not know that terminology it’s just a street way of describing someone who turns their home into a place where people come to spend their money for food, alcohol, etc. Not a nurturing environment for a young female child, whose guardian often paid more attention to the liquor bottle, than what was happening to me. My young adolescent days were full of tormenting abuses of all kind. I remember many times in elementary school, I dreaded gym class for fear and embarrassment people would see the open wounds from the beatings. Before I graduated from elementary school I already turned out to what it took to get a man’s attention, with my guardian turning a blind eye to everything, making me swear to silence, “to never tell.”
Let me go further by the time I was 16 years old I was pregnant with my first child and by the time I was 17 years old I was a full fledged cocaine snorter, by the age of 19 crack cocaine overtook my life and I struggled for years up until my incarceration with addiction. During my mini (limited) periods of sobriety I was able to educate myself and maintain adequate homes for my family but it never lasted long.
The echoes of my past demons never let me forget the words that were pounded into my brain as a youth. “You’ll never be nothing.” “You’re stupid.” “You won’t live past 19, just like your mother.”
Because of all the harsh insulting language and abuses inflicted upon me by my very first role model of a “man.” I grew into adulthood believing those lies driven into my head. So I went after men who mimic my abuser, one destructive relationships after another, the abuse become so normal to me that if I didn’t have it, I often missed it because too my old damaged thinking that was love. I really knew that my life was seriously out of control when in 1997, I was shot in my back right near my heart by a jilted ex-lover and never reported it to the police, all because he said he didn’t mean it and he loved me. I could have lost my life, but my life was of no value to me, no amount of accomplishments that I achieved in my life could fill that black hole I called a “soul.” I was broken. After the shooting of 1997, I believe that was the last of the hundreds of traumatizing episodes in my life that finally became the straw that broke the camel’s back, my addiction spiraled out of this world and I lost myself, my children, my job, and what little dignity I had. Homeless and ragged by 2003, I found myself involved in an actual homicide never, ever, ever did I think my addiction would take me this far, I’d never been to prison, surely this could not be happening to me. OH BUT IT WAS!!!
Since my incarceration I’ve done some serious soul searching, someone losing their life is nothing to be taken lightly and by hell or high water I was going to cleanse myself of all the filth I carried in me, starting from the inside out. First, for me came extreme, excruciating remorse for no one has the right to take another person’s life, only God should make those decisions. Then came years of self-loathing chronic disgust at myself and all my past bad actions. Once I overcame those feelings I spent many years apologizing to God and to countless other. I continue to work on forgiving others who hurt me and broke me and finally I’m learning to forgive myself.
All of this with the support of Almighty God. Fourteen years! Fourteen long years of self-analysis, it’s one of the hardest things any human being could ever do, whether incarcerated or not. To be able to admit you’re a messed-up train wreck and then have the courage to change, means you have to take major responsibility.
Some people will read this and say well: I was abused as a child and I used drugs, but I never murdered anyone. Well to them I would say thank your God everyday that he spared you from my testimony. But to the many can relate to what I went through and where it’s got me, I would say to them there is redemption and change in the lives of people like us. We all have read The Holy Bible, it’s God’s book of forgiveness, it illustrates how our Creator changed great sinners into extra powerful warriors of his word. Paul was a murderer of the Christians before God granted him redemption and made him a faithful follower of Christ.
Solomon had the spirit of lust, but God granted him redemption and made him a mighty king. I’m not using these examples to say it’s okay to go ahead and commit crime because God will forgive us, crime deserves punishment, but if we the men and women serving life behind bars can pay our dues to society becoming and example to the many still stick, suffering, and lost in our communities, to show that even the worst of people can turn their lives around for the greater good, then why can’t we be forgiven and granted a second chance at life? So many of us, myself included, are very remorseful for our crimes whether we were the actual perpetrators or accomplice, whatever our individual stories, we are people who made life devastating choices and life-changing mistakes, that have affected our families’ lives and our victims’ families’ lives.
Be warned this plague, I and countless other have endured doesn’t discriminate, our experiences are real. Although we serve life sentences we still have hope and we believe in the compassion of our fellow man because we the men and the women, who have turned our lives around with the renewal of our hearts and minds, we ask, hope, and pray for a second chance.
Please support House Bill 135.
Sarita’s Pride and Joy
“Kyree is my oldest child and the father of my beautiful grandchildren, Amil and Sincere. Kyree is hot in the game of music. He is known to his followers and fans as “Red Alley,” he does shows in the Philadelphia area and he promotes his own music.
You can follow him on Instagram under “Iamredalley.”
Sarita Miller 14 served, 2004
Continue the conversation…
Smart Communications/PA DOC Sarita Miller, OJ-3158
SCI Cambridge Springs PO Box 33028
St. Petersburg, Fla. 33733