To those of you who know me and for those of you who don’t, I’ve always been a positive, energetic, hard-charging, and self starting person.  I love a challenge and have never backed away from one as resolving the quandary and getting to the destination is always as rewarding as the solution itself and the journey it took me to get there.  I’ve been this way my whole life both at work and at home and there has never been any room for negative thinking in my world.  One either lives life as it happens to them, meets it head on and licks it, or turns their back on it and starts to wither away.  Not being much for withering, I’ve always met it head on and always will.  And nowhere else until I self-surrendered to the Camp, has that attitude been tested ever more.  So in case you’re wondering, I am still the same Holli as I’ve always been, I’m finding new ways to smile, and I’m discovering other avenues to stay positive.  After all, there’s always a silver lining through any cloud right?  And that’s what I’ve always looked for in any situation.

To my way of thinking, I’m here now and I’m here for a reason.  And while this part of my life is a radical departure from what I’ve ever known or certainly ever expected, I’m looking at it as a gift of sorts; a second chance if you will; a time to reflect and grow and learn, understand, and resolve things about a part of myself that I perhaps never really knew.  Every situation is unique and as such, we should value it for what it is, seek out and maximize the opportunities that exist, preservers, and take as much away from the experience as we can.  That’s what my life is really about after all, and right now and for the next 18 months, this is my life.

Although I’ve only been here for a few weeks, the people here, both the Camp staff and the inmates, have been kind, constructive and empathetic.  The inmates share with and support each other and unexpectedly, I’ve met many women here my age or older that are here for a charge of a similar nature to mine. I’ve listened to alot of their stories many of which are hard and support them as best I can given we’re all in this together.  Being an empathetic person and a good listener by nature, I’ve come to think that as strange as this may sound, that perhaps I’m even here for a reason, that my presence here might somehow help another, or that another here may help me as well and make a difference in the rest of my life.  Like myriad ripples on a pond emanating from one source, creating new ripples on and on.  Perhaps I can be a source to others and they to me.

A good friend of mine once told me that those we meet we are destined to meet and that those whose paths we cross were meant to be.  And that there’s a reason for everything and a continuity of past, present and future that exists but that we just can’t perceive.  Philosophical yes, but after some of the things that have happened to me and the unexpected yet critical help that I’ve received through all of this, I can only believe that that is indeed true.  You never know where and what gifts another may impart to you, upon you, and for you.  To help and bolster you at a time when you need it most.  And as with us in here, we may pass in and out of our lives for a time and we may also never see each other again, some by design and others by just a natural fading across time.  nor may we recognize each other as such at the time but it is only after our gifts make a difference that we realize how necessary we were and how things might have turned out differently without each other.

SO I talk, and I think, and I listen, and I do, and I smile, and I search, and I read, and I write, and I reflect, and I help, and I share, and I respect, and I give, and I honor, and above all, I appreciate.  EVERYTHING!  This chance, this second chance, that I’ve been given, and I will of course, make the absolute best of it.  For it’s the only way I know how to be.  Onward and upward.  Until next time.

Best, Holli


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