Good afternoon. My name is Rodney and I will share my story with you.
I came up in a home of 6 boys and 2 girls. All of my brothers and sisters have their fathers in their lives but me. My father comes in and out of my life like a flash. My mother is independent. She does what she can and prays for what she can’t. I love her. She is a strong black woman.
My brothers and I always fought each other so I felt like everybody was ganging up on me saying things to me about my Daddy. This would hurt me when I was younger, but as I got older it made me stronger. Everything I have, I got it on my own.
I was not a bad person. I was in school. I made it to the 12th grade. Then that’s when everything went wrong, because I didn’t have a father figure in my life. That made me think I was my father. So, I started acting like a man and doing manly things.
When I was 15 I had my first child, my son. He is now one year old. Then my 2nd child is my little girl. She is five and a half months. They have different mothers.
The only thing I remember when I was 12 years old is when my grandmother took us from our mother. It was tragic. I cried everyday hoping that I could go home. She didn’t like me because I was not her grandson.
When my brothers wanted anything that I had, she took it from me. She told them to jump me. Hit me with anything they could find. That really hurt, I never felt so bad in my life, besides coming to jail. My heart has been hurt, broken and walked over.
Sometimes, I feel like no one cares anymore. I am locked up for something I did not do. I really miss my family. It hurts to know I have kids out there and I am away from them. My father wasn’t there for me, so I have to be there for them.
I pray that the good Lord helps me through this. In this life I have had so much pain. It hurts the most when I hold it all in. Being locked up isn’t the only pain that I have been through. When I was young my father would tell me to believe in him like I believe in God. Those were the most powerful words he could say to me but, what really hurts me is to know that for 9 months, 3 weeks and 2 days of being incarcerated, I haven’t seen the face of my father, except when I look in the mirror.
Sometimes I want to cry but I ask myself …Why?
I did not ask to be here.