If you’ve ever sent text messages, you know that they carry a small piece of information that is often useful called a time stamp. Emails also have time stamps. It’s a little signature of when things get sent and received, a coming and going of information. As this is a standard in the free world on a variety of platforms, our prison email system isn’t exempt from the time stamp. However, ours reflects the Eastern Time Zone of the United States. The other morning I woke up to two emails from a dear friend who has been out of prison for less than a week. Her messages were stamped 3:25am and 3:30am, times that represented that she was awake and catching up on correspondence shortly after midnight our time.

I felt myself become emotional about these messages. Of course I love hearing from my dear friend, but the time she sent them is what got to me. I thought about her life in this short distance from prison and how it’s full enough to have to catch up with some writing in the deepest parts of the night. I beamed with pride and hope that her life, after all these years in prison and turning in at 9 pm, her life was… full. In my mind, I was overwhelmed about how busy she must be and how she is adapting to her life and how catching up on a few emails after midnight is a sign that she’s doing things in her life, with her life. A full life where she drifts off to sleep hours past what she used to because she’s busy catching up on everything (including me in a little writing). I appreciate the “after midnight” time stamps on an email from friends who’ve gotten out, because it’s a sign that the life they’ve worked so hard to get to keeps them busy. Keep it up, Dana…

by Rory Andes

I enjoy the signs of a life well lived.

Email at Jpay.com using Rory Andes 367649

Or by Mail:
Rory Andes 367649
PO Box 888

Monroe, WA 98272