To whom it may concern:
I am writing this on the day before I will enter the Smith County jail for a sentence of ninety days. It feels bizarre, almost surreal, that the path I have chosen has landed me here, as I approach my thiry-fifth birthday. Having admitted to serious charges of possession and intent to sale marijuana, I am paying the consequences by serving my jail sentence—although some say that my sentence is too light, that I should be going to prison for my offenses.
How did I get here—a professional, middle-class, vote-in-every election, citizen? Well, at first it didn’t seem like such a slide. I just wanted to try something different, to spread my wings after getting out of my ugly, constricted marriage. So I embarked on what I termed my Social Project—meet a new group of people, indulge in some fun times, be a little risky for once! Going bar-hopping with my single girlfriends was just what I needed to peel away my cocoon. I met lots of good-looking guys who were attracted to me and gave me attention—that was intoxicating and exciting! Expressing my sexuality gave me a new freedom and a sense of power and control that I hadn’t known before. The drugs and alcohol that I sampled only served to amplify all these new spontaneous experiences. I felt that this time was an opening for me, a life-affirming breakthrough. However, as I continued in this lop-sided pattern of only personal indulgence, other parts of my life began to crumble and deteriorate. My job performance, as well as my health, declined dramatically. Because I had stopped communicating with my friends and family, they became distant and hard to reach.
Looking back, the mistake I made was to believe that the totality of life can be spent in that particular layer of volatility, in a hedonistic playground, in a nightclub that never closes. It was one thing for me to explore my personal freedom through new experiences and experimentation, to delve into my sensuality, to take a hold of life and live on the edge—but it became another poisonous thing when I was only motivated out of my need for power and hunger for self-gratification—to feel good. (It seems very pathetic in retrospect!)
And so it happened that during one of those “exciting times” with one of my anonymous boyfriends, in a haze of booze and drugs, we made what I thought was a small deal selling some marijuana so we could get some extra cash. It turned out to be a big deal when we were busted and I was actually led away in handcuffs.
Now, I’ve lost my job, my apartment, can’t make payments on my car, not to mention the toll it has taken on my family and friends—who by the way, stood by me when my other so-called party friends somehow disappeared. The one thing that I’ve learned through my gigantic disastrous downfall is that my friends and family, plus new “real” people I’m meeting through Alcoholics Anonymous, will be there for me when I finish my incarceration and they will help me work my way back to a life of meaning and balance.
Tentatively and hopefully yours,
To date, Emma is still going through her rehabilitation and grappling with her life choices. She recently stated that facing up to her demons and integrating them in a non-judgmental way has opened up new possibilities for her to live a much healthier lifestyle. She's stopped psychologically beating herself up about her past actions and is learning to live one day at a time.
Unfortunately, celebrities have a much harder road to travel because of the intense pressure caused by the Media's zeal for the latest and greatest sensational story that they can dig up.
When in the Realm of Citrinitas, we will confront sensual stimulations and emotional arousal. With caution and an exit strategy, we can venture into this world of olfactory aliveness to experience our carnal nature. We just need to remember to measure how close we are to Goddess Power!