Finally, the probation officer called me. It was relatively painless.
I must admit she surprised me with some of the things she said. I remember when i first met her, a year ago. She did not know me one bit and, then, I was rearrested for reasons that, on the surface, seem legitimate, but that fades as details of truth are told.
None the less, she did not know me. I thought I would have to go into my neighborhood to visit her each month as I am suppose to do. She says no, that is not an issue. That is great. I remember when all of this started. I did not want to go to her office because being in the area of my mom's house would hurt too much. It did not matter.
One reason it hurt was because I was living a different life when all hell broke loose. I was not getting on my bicycle and driving east to purchase cocaine. I was getting on my bicycle and going west to go shopping for my mother every day and every night. I went from buying drugs, to buying sports equipment , to buying tools for the house to buying things to help mom navigate through the day, such as a glass holder or a cane. Of course it took time to see what she really needed.
The only way I would find out the truth was if she had to ask me to do something.
She never went to the store the last year I was home, although I was shopping for the house the last two years. At one point, I was shopping for the house, my mother and my sister would drop stuff off on the weekends. I never saw her. Just the bags. I knew she was busy. I wanted to tell her it was not necessary because I had that end covered. I loved shopping. I began to appreciate the value for a dollar. That is what it was.
I enjoyed waking up and seeing things in the house that I bought and could use to better the house.
Anyway, I am digressing too much. The truth is, I am trying to stay busy.
The probation officer, at this time, discussed with me the possibility of having my case expunged or reduced to a misdemeanor. Wow. That is something. She said it is at the discretion of the judge. She said I can ask to have the fees waived so I can get off of probation early.
I can not believe that we even are discussing something like that. I guess that time moves on every day. I am racking up credibility points as nothing has changed. I said I was not doing drugs and it is clear I am not doing drugs. Many officers and mental health people on Skid Row totally understand how my mom could not have recognized me for a moment. It is interesting that I have so much support from them. However, they see this kind of thing everyday on Skid Row.
It is amazing to me that I am speaking to officers and college students. In fact, one student wrote me back and said some very nice things to me. It is a far cry from all of the negative things said about me a year ago.
However, before this happened, I enjoyed compliments from the USC swim team members and the swim coaches and every one at the USC Athletic Center. They played an extraordinary part in my leaving the drug world and, at the same time, regaining confidence in myself. I felt appreciated. Then , of course, my mom fell right in line with all of that. Then Murphy's law crept in.
For the last year I could not see past the gloom. Each day something happens to give me a different perspective. It has been slow but it has been steady.
However, to actually sit and here the probation officer discuss with me certain possibilities over the phone is a juncture at which I thought I would never be. Never. If I could renew my license that would be awesome. One day at a time, walter.
Alot is behind me. People actually do believe me. I was told this morning, that it is because I am doing everything I said I would do. I said I left cocaine behind and I still have.
There is a school of thought that insists that if a person is thrust into an environment that is destructive, then the person will revert back to crtain destructive behavior.
That does not have to be the case. That school of thought needs to be examined. I lived on Skid Row for almost a year. My concern was to continue training for another triathlon, not doing drugs. I want to continue where I left off.
I could with some luck. There is reason to believe I am gaining momentum. I had to establish credibility with longevity. I am living now on the worst street in Skid Row. I am gaining momentum, not getting weak for drugs. I resolved issues in my life when I studied and trained.
If I had a few things from home, I would be set. "HOw to write a Screen Play" by Syd Field is a book I will have to purchase. My sister bought it for me. I read it and studied it. I was learning alot about writing a screenplay. I mentioned to my sister that I might win a pulitzer, one day, if I kept writing. I remember that day.
It was a Saturday. I was glad to see her. That was when I was making deep strides into my life. Drugs were down, fitness was up, way up. I wanted her to be proud of me that day. She ended up thinking that I said I won something. More on that later.
I share these things because my perspective is changing as time goes on.
I said I would share all things, all thoughts while going on this path. It would be less than honest to do anything less. It is a valuable part of this blog and
to not do so would be to lessen the chances of helping someone down here who has a relative that may not understand what they are going through.
It may seem like a zig zag. Somebody told me of his relationship with a woman. when he was with her she talked of many things that seemed unrelated. "Walter, she just has so much on her mind. She tries to find a way through so much snarl."
That is the same with me. At one point it was the reason why I did do drugs. I could not see a way out of anything. One problem after another. As I trained for the triathlon, I began to see how I could take a path, keep on that path and I could chip away at the plethora of complications in my life.
That experience of understanding is helping me at this time just like learning and recognizing many things when I quit cocaine, over a long period of time, helped me
to stop smoking cigarettes, quickly.
I am researching with this writing and the writing of the last couple of days. I am attempting to see something. I am attempting to discover something that will enable me to discover more of me and enable me to recognize where I am at relative to everything else and to where I was a few months ago. There is movement.
One thing that bothers me is that I look down and see this torn old tennis shoes on my feet. I was given these pair of shoes when somebody was kicked out of the old facility in which I was living until this past September. I received them in May.
My other shoes wore out. I tried to go home and get two pairs of shoes, one for work and one for walking around but it caused too much trouble and put me at risk.
I had one shoe that was stuff into a big bag the first time I was home but the other is at home. That was in February. It is hard to believe it has been that long.
Anyway, I do not feel good about myself when I wear these shoes. It also reminds me of that time when I first received these shoes. I do not want to remember that everyday. I want to feel progress everyday. IT does not matter in what area, I just want to feel it. I was like that when I was gaining momentum against the
"great drug fight". When I felt, I was not moving forward, I wanted to experience a victory. Many times it meant sweeping up some more stuff that remained from throwing out stuff from the house. That is all it took for me to find a path again and continue going.
You have no idea how much time I have spent on thinking about shoes in general and these shoes in particular. It is time to get beyond that. I will feel better about myself. I will not be reminded of the past. That energy spent on that negative feeling can be replaced. I will be free to discover something I need to find.
It will be an invisible burden off of me. It is the little things that matter. Win the little battles. One must recognize what one needs that will enable success in other areas. This morning it is shoes. I will also put a couple of more dollars on a class.
Progress. Inch by Inch. I started writing this yesterday. I am finishing this at 6 the following morning.