I am so much stronger than I was 10 years ago, so much more resilient. I’ve broken a million times and rebuilt myself a million times too. It took me a few years in prison to learn that the reason we break is so that we can put the pieces back together better. I don’t mind breaking anymore because I am so much stronger than I once was.

I’m under an immense amount of stress right now *and* I’m okay. I got this. It’s more than just surviving, it’s a knowing. I *know*.

I began my hormone treatment in 2019, sometimes I feel like a hormonal teenager still. Being tucked away in a mostly male prison doesn’t help temper those hormones in any way. But the truth of the matter is I’m 39 years old, I’m no teen. I have a life to live, rebuild. I have some making up to do. It’s not lost on me that I am about to release from prison, nearly 40, with just a few thousand dollars and about 9k in debt and bad credit.

But give me 2 years and see where I’m at. Watch what I’m about to do. I’m about to flex all over this state, spread my intelligent wings and wisdom and rebuild my life and I’ll rebuild it better. Because I’m so much stronger than I once was.

I want to say you are too. Think about all the times you’ve broken or been broken. Look at you now, you’re still here. It didn’t take you out. You rebuilt and now your stronger! You’re okay! This is why we have support systems, friends and family and even acquaintances, to bolster us up. To share the load when we need to break a little. We support them when they break a little, or a lot. Help them rebuild stronger. That’s what we do.

With Love
Ruth Utnage