First Dance

I have never really ‘Danced’. I always wanted to. Confidence was not my strongest suite. Not during my adolescence.

I am over confident here in my latter years. Too confident in various ways. Some would say that I am ‘cocky’. I don’t see being such as a bad trait. For, with confidence comes success. The boldness that accompanies cockiness brings with it the fearless approach to whatever life has presented. It tells those interacting with you that you are prepared to stand your ground when it comes to your beliefs.

I never thought about beliefs during my youth. More than likely because I had no just reason to “believe”. I held no faith in religious nor mankind’s “beliefs“. I had no reason to. Those years consisted of one tragedy after another. Fueling my drug addictions. Fueling my desire to buck the system. To defy authority.

Alas, to quote the minstrel ‘John Cougar Mellencamp’, “I fought authority and authority often wins”. I certainly pushed the boundaries of society’s laws. I definitely lost my common sense. Eventually I lost my freedom.

Prison does little for the average inmate. The few, such as myself, that look at incarceration as a chance to turn over a new leaf and use their time to change their ways are rare. Very rare.

Being sent to a super maximum security penitentiary scared me straight. I was not afraid of the physical aspects of being there. Not at all. At that period of life I was a very tough streetwise animal. What the basis of my fear was that I could do the time easily. Hence, if I had continued on my self destructive path, I could accept any length of sentence given to me. I would simply switch to my ‘inmate‘ mode and accept that this was what my life had become.

That thought, that twisted self defense image scared me. So, I changed. I was released 41 years ago and never went back. In a way you could say that I was a perfect example of ‘rehabilitation’.

I dabbled in the extreme criminal life for numerous years after my release. I did so in an intelligent and devious way so as no matter what went down I would not be arrested or rather, I would not be ‘convicted’. That is a sad statement of confession for me to make.

Certainly nothing to be proud of.

I will dance someday. Not today, though.

I will dance when I reach Valhalla. When I am reunited with all who ascended before me.

That will be far from today. For today I have much to do.

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