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The One Mistake That Canceled a Productive Life for Me

One night, after being in my drug addiction for a few years, I decided to break into a school in Tampa Florida, where I was residing at the time, looking for something that I could steal so that I could buy a hit. After getting onto the school grounds I broke into a classroom via one of its windows. Upon entering the classroom, the only thing that I saw that may be of value was a television mounted on the wall. Using a chair, I disconnected the television from its wall mounts without any problem.

With television in hand, I now decided that I did not want to go back through the window with the set, so I opened the classroom door and walked out into the hallway. As I scanned both ends of the hallway I could see cameras mounted in certain spots close to the ceiling. I knew that I was being recorded but I didn’t care because I figured that I would be long gone before the police arrived on the scene.

I took my time leaving the premises, and not because I was feeling confident, but because I was numb from drug use. I reached one of the gates leading out of the building structure and was met by a security guard with a gun in hand. He was on one side of the gate and I was on the other. My first instinct was to run, instead, I obeyed his instructions to sit the television down and get face down on the pavement. I did as he told me to do because I just did not feel like running.

Working as a day laborer during the day, using all of my pay to buy my drug of choice, very little sleep and even less to eat, I was in no physical nor mental shape to make a break for it when I encountered that security guard on the other side of the gate. He unlocked the gate and entered, handcuffed me and then told me to stand to my feet.

Once on my feet, he asked me if I had any weapons on me. I told him that I had a small pocket knife in my pocket, which he removed. Soon afterward a police car arrived on the scene and I was taken to jail.

When I went before the judge and heard my charges it was like I was hearing a recap of one of Jesse James escapades. The security guard had beefed up his report of the incident in such a way as to make himself shine like a determined Texas Ranger who had just captured one of America’s most wanted.

Even so, I was placed on probation and released in the middle of the night. This, of course, was a felony and also the first time that I’d ever been arrested. This one drug driven mistake in judgment now haunts me relentlessly.

Some years later after completing a six months’ drug rehab program I became clean and sober. Thankfully, I have remained clean and sober for more years than I want to admit because at the moment I am age sensitive. Sobriety did not and has not erased that felony from my record.

That one charge has been like a nail driven into the back of my neck each time I have applied for a good-paying job in my field (Computer troubleshooting and repair). It has also kept me in the reject bin on all other non-computer related employment that pays well and jobs that you can feel good about going to every day.

It feels great to be clean and sober. My decision to use drugs changed the entire course of my life in a most unfruitful and unproductive way. My decision to steal has kept me in bondage significantly beyond my original jail sentence. One bad decision and a lifetime sentence. A criminal record that cannot be expunged lies in wait at the end of every job application to turn my hopes to dust and keep me at the poverty level.

Yet I do not surrender even knowing that I will be refused the employment opportunity once a background check is undertaken. Hoping against hope for some wayward burp in the system that will allow me to prove myself and show that I can be an asset to my employer, I fill out applications hoping for the best and expecting the norm.

The choices that I have made so far in my life have damaged me almost beyond repair. I decided to be a thief and have had so many precious years of my life stolen away from me because of my choice to be that. Days, weeks, months, and years of life do not come with a refund.

There is only one opportunity to make it good within this physical sphere of realities. If you choose to do drugs, if you choose to steal, you must be ready to suffer the consequences of your actions. One way or another you are going to get it.

There is no such thing as getting away scot-free. The life-slayer is right at the other end of a bad choice and decision and it will rip your hopes, dreams, goals, and future to pieces. Your rap sheet lurks silently in the background waiting for you to make a charge for upward mobility so that it can zoom face-front and deflate you.

But I have done this to myself. I have leaped upon my own neck and have strangled the crap out of my career ambitions and goals. I have created my own stumbling blocks by the choices and decisions that I have made. I have doomed my life to being unfulfilled and a heavy burden upon itself.

I have given the Grim Reaper my flesh and bones considerably beyond the appointed time of my terrestrial demise. I have done this to myself because I would not take command and control of myself but commissioned my life and wellbeing to be grafted by cravings and passions that are earmarked for my absolute destruction.

The end of me is at hand. The custom-built has been broken and slayed by the butchers thinking. The assassin has chosen himself for the next kill. The bullet was shot from the chamber the very instant that the muck and mire was conceived. The murderer has justly murdered himself. Finished. Complete.

Feel free to read my autobiography Fatally Pathetic: The Story of an Ill-fated Conception