July 10, 2014



1). Where did I grow up?-

I grew up in the Dayton area of Ohio. My parents moved around a few times to surrounding cities, but always to a better home then the last and always in a good neighborhood, where crime was low and property value continued to grow.

2). Am I the same person I was as a child, or am I different?

Many things have changed my thoughts and feelings on life over the years, some good and some not so good, but deep inside I remain the same compassionate, loving individual I always was.

3). Who had the most positive influence on me?

My grandmother, my mother, my father and my cousin Aaron have all had a major impact on my life. My family has always been the most positive influence in my life. The amount of love and joy they bring to one another is unmeasurable. The people I mentioned are some of the most important influences in my life because they all exude the qualities of a soul that is consistently rich in great morals, values and beliefs.

4). Why was I given my name and does it have any special meaning?

Well I would like to say that I was named after someone very important, or that it stands for something great and powerful, but it’s just not so. My mother tells me that my middle name, Alexander was given to me after one of her high school friends and as for my first name, she just likes the name, Steven, and so do I.

5). What about being a child do I miss the most?

EVERYTHING! But since I have to choose one I would have to say the blissful innocence and ignorance of life, free from the anguish of understanding hurt and pain, addiction, heartache, death, etc. Maybe I’m getting a little too deep. Maybe that sounds like I don’t enjoy being an adult because I do, there are many things like love for a woman, love for my children and many other great things that I would never want to give back for childhood dreams.

6). What lesson from childhood have I continued to use throughout my life?

I have continued not to judge another person, respecting their individuality, understanding that they are human just like me, they have faults just like me, they have qualities just like me, and they will one day pass from this earth just like me.

7). What is the one thing I disliked as a child that I now appreciate?

As a child there was hardly a thing I didn’t like, so I’m going to keep it simple and say tomatoes and female anatomy. I didn’t like either of the two as a child, but now I love both!

8). What grade would I like to substitute teach of one month?

Well I never thought about this question until now, I would have to say maybe sixth grade because at that age certain classes like science and geography fascinated me.

9). What school books do I remember?

Of Mice and Men was my absolute favorite.

10). What new course would I like to add to my curriculum?

It just so happens that I’ve been blessed enough to enroll in the course of my dreams. For the next twelve months I’ll be learning horticulture for five days a week, three hours each day and at the end of the course, if and when I pass all four tests I will have a master certification in core, basic landscaping, garden center and grower, carrying these skills and knowledge with me in application to the world outside of prison.

11). What quality from my childhood have I maintained throughout my life?

Sometimes I don’t consider it a quality, especially while in prison, yet most of the time I’m happy to be extra sensitive to life and the people around me. Compassion, empathy and sympathy are feelings always on the surface of my soul, creating understanding for other individuals in life. My sensitive nature has been a major part of my substance abuse, in a failed attempt to dull what is at times overwhelming emotions.

12). The most difficult thing in life is________?

Learning how to be patient.

13). What lessons have I learned between then and now?

In life I have learned a countless number of lessons, almost always having to learn them in the most difficult way. Through trial and error is how I’ve had to learn, and not usually the first time, constantly bashing my head against the proverbial brick wall called life. Each day I continue to learn, seeking out answers that will help me in life as a man, father, son, lover and human being that just wants to be better in all aspects of life.

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