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This is not the end of me - by M

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Change begins with choice

LNP student-inmate from institution TM1

Consolation Prize

We were born in this world not by choice. We were also not given a choice to choose a life that we wanted beforehand. I was no exception. When I was young, my parents were addicts. They exposed me to drugs. I saw my parents consumed the drug and I also saw how sick they got when they did not to take the drugs. I asked mum what that was, and she replied, "It is my medicine". My parents were in and out of prison for some time and they were divorced. I was being taken care of by aunt. I have never felt the feeling of love my parents.

As I grew older and reached my teenage years, I started to mix around with some of my friends who were bad influences and started to explore drugs. When I started to take the drugs, I felt the high and euphoric feeling from the drugs. This feeling was what made me addicted to the drugs. I realized that when I drugs, I would always be in my own world and would not bother what my aunt would say to me. I did not care for my aunt's feelings, and sometimes I would make her cry.

When I was being incarcerated, I lost my freedom and everything. Not only that, my wife and children lost the love and attention that they needed from me too. How selfish was I for not caring for their feelings too. It felt like how my parents did to me when I was young. I wish that I could turn back the time and never explored drugs. If I never dealt with drugs, I would not be inside the prison and I would not become an absent husband and father to my wife and children too much. This was truly a wakeup call.

When I was in the four walls, I had to make a decision to change. A choice that was seemingly simple, but indeed very challenging personally. So, I started to realize that being an addict was meaningless. I kept asking myself if this is the life I dreamt of when I was young. This is not the end of me. I cleaned up my act and I cut my friends out of my life. I shifted to a new place and got myself a better job. This gave me a chance to turn a new leaf.

It is never too late. Happiness was what I was actually looking for in my life. It will never come to those who fail to appreciate the blessings that they already have. That was me then. Now I appreciate what God has given to me. Thank you.


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