No Walk in the Park
It's with great pleasure that I share with you all that I've finally been granted the opportunity to go to a drug treatment facility and that I was granted parole. :) I'm so excited and still feel like it's unbelievable. Even though I sit here, it's still not registered. But I thought it would be neat to describe this place and give you readers a journey through its process, for some of you would like to know for family purposes or just plain curiosity.
First and foremost, I was given a FI-5. I'm housed at the Kyle Treatment Facility. It's a private prison close to Austin, TX. Since I have arrived on the 16th of November, my released date is set for the 16th of May. It's a peer-driven program meaning that the inmates that have been here for a while run the structure of the place.
We are given a "Big Brother". This person, upon an arrival's responsibility, is to help the new orientee (myself) transition to the environment, rules, and chain of command. You may be given a Big Brother completely at random and completely unorthodox to your personality or character. This is to breach the unfamiliar territory of going outside comfort levels, forcing you to interact with people you would not normally do in an ordinary fashion. But it's a two-way street. The treatment is for them as well. But its purpose is for growth in both individuals, stopping outside their comfort zones.
This, my readers, is my first week in treatment. I'm still in orientation but familiar with its system.
Our setting is enclosed in a jail type structure. The typical county, housing 48 per dorm with two-man cells.
Since I've been here, it's been hard to adapt because not everyone wants to change like I want to and not everybody is here for drug use. So we are forced to deal with different types of attitudes and behaviors daily and expected to hold one another accountable. How are we supposed to do this when half do not care? And that's been the hardest part: to accept that I cannot change this, no matter how much I want to.
Oddly enough, this goes back to an AA serenity prayer, accepting the things I can change and changing the things I can. Here, that is me. I'm in a program that does not truly care whether you change or not. It's a program designed to fake it to make it. Yes, we have group but no one—or shall I say, a majority—doesn't participate. They read books, do puzzles, or talk in small groups. The counselors barely care—and can you blame them? Most quit in a matter of months.
I have a master treatment plan. We all do, and all it is, is a copy of someone else's given to me on the spur of the moment. Because mine was forgotten about and one day they noticed it was due that afternoon. I was called in before the other counselor quit and was told, "Hey, just sign this. They'll redo it." One day later.
For those of you wondering if this will truly help your loved one? Probably not! So be aware of this fact. No matter how much they well you their lives have changed from this place, still, be cautious.
There are some good aspects, thought, and that's if they fully participate. It's understanding whether we are really sick and tired of the lifestyle in which we lived with the drugs and alcohol, the partying, and hanging out with negative people that may influence us. They do teach you the basics here, if you listen. But it's up to the individual to learn with the tools that's given.
Since I've been here, I've been placed in an article in the local newspaper. :) They have a program here called Stitch a Smile. It's in the Kyle Unit in Kyle, TX. It's to promote people on the outside to donate yarn so if a client like myself wanted to do something kind to repay society, they may volunteer to make toys or blankets for sick children in hospitals. Yes, I learned to crochet. :P LOL Of all people, but I didn't do it for myself. I did it for others. I didn't even think of the idea of kids being in hospitals with few toys or warm blankets, so I'm doing this with my spare time.
They also have a dog program with PAWS. You can learn more by going to their site. I'm writing to let some of you know that you can follow my progress. For those of you who are new who happen upon my page, you can see the transition.
I still have quite a journey. When I am released in May 16th, I'll be placed at the Salvation Army in Dallas. I'm scared. I don't have any family and one friend. No clothes of any kind or even work roots. Not even a hand-me-down phone. I don't know what to do. So if you're in the Dallas area and you would like to help, support me in reintegration. Please send me your contact information so I may correspond with you and seek assistance. Your help is valuable to me.
I will write more later to give you further progress.
Teddy Drake #1599339
Kyle Unit C 204 B
23001 IH 35
Kyle, TX 78640
San Marcus Daily Record
[Photo of the author holding a dolly]
Teddy Drake proudly holds up a finished yellow platypus doll he crocheted for donation.
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