08082023 (Day #4241)
Support network and social contacts
I have an amazing support network. My Mom took on the role of “Team Leader” early on, and has been instrumental in coordinating collaborations with my goals and objectives. I’m fairly confident of the success and satisfaction brought on by the accomplishments so far. I’m not complacent, not stagnant, and neither is my support network. There’s more I want to accomplish, more goals to achieve, more objectives to bring to fruition. Expanding my support network can help. Social contacts can help. If social contacts don’t evolve into additions to my “active” support network, I’m ok with that. Social contacts can actually be beneficial as part of a “passive” support network.
I’m very receptive to making social connections and having casual communication with anyone outside of here. I keep a very, very small “social circle” here. I’m not antisocial or an introvert, I just choose to be very cautious about who I associate with so that I’m not wrapped up in others’ drama or scandals. In the long term, friendships that originate in prison are ultimately temporary because of the post-release prohibitions against associating with “known felons”. So seeking social connections with people outside of here is, for me, more productive over the long term. I’ve done a lot of work on communication, healthy boundaries, and interpersonal skills, to name a few, during and outside of SOTP-NR. I’m confident of my “new me” ability to be the kind of friend a friend would like to have.
I WANT TO BE EXPLICITLY CLEAR, THOUGH – I AM NOT SEEKING ANY SORT OF “LOVE DURING LOCKUP” SITUATION OR “SUGAR MOMMA”. I understand the perceptions that can be created by TV and movies that paint people in prison as con artists, manipulators, and doers of various sketchy stuff. That’s not me, not my motivation or intention.
Want to talk about baseball? I’m a huge STL Cardinals fan. I love softball, too, and a huge fan of the OU Sooners softball dynasty. Want to talk about racing or other sports? Count me in. Want to talk about what’s going on in current events? I’m up for it. Need someone to just vent to when you have a bad day? I’ve learned how to be a good listener and be supportive. The point is, social connections and casual communication are another step along the path of being a better me.
On a related note, I have Restorative Justice participation on my radar. I’ve read that RJ has a proxy-type aspect for offenders to serve as “sounding boards” for people who have been victimized. I’m receptive to that, maybe I can help someone in their healing process somehow. So if anyone has insight, advice, or perspective to share about Restorative Justice or similar programs, I welcome the input.
A better “new me” a little bit each day.