I always have a good time being surrounded by beautiful and well-cared for babies and toddlers. I get to witness their mothers learning new parenting skills at a time in life when a child's neurological development is rapid and significant.
"I’m in treatment and I’m so glad that I did it. I’m realizing the things that brought me to my addiction and a lot of it stems from my rape by my uncle when I was sixteen. Going to counseling has been a struggle. It’s bringing up some feelings that I’ve kept hidden. I’m trying to realize that it happened and I’ll never forget it but I need to start getting over it because I haven’t. I will probably never really get over it, but I dwell on it a lot so I’m trying not to.
"I let it consume me and I need to stop. That’s one thing I need to work on. I’m doing IOP (Intensive Out-Patient) now and when I get out, I’ll do both counseling with my counselor and outpatient treatment.
"My counselor did an assignment on triggers – and a lot of my triggers are when I think about that. So, I when I think about it, I try to numb the pain. We watched a video on meth the other day. I learned that meth doesn’t numb the pain. I thought I was numbing it but I was just making the issue worse by getting high. It’s crazy. I’m in prison for possession of meth."
I went back for my second day this week. There are 15 moms in the unit and I can only get to 2 or 3 in one session, so I have some catching up to do. This mom was just having a good time playing with her 18 month old son before his nap time and I managed to stand up on a chair to take this image. It makes me smile.Read More
First Day Back
I spent the few hours with two young women: one with her four-week old daughter and the other 37 weeks pregnant. I felt a little rusty, remembering how to work in the small spaces where each mother and baby pair live.
I know I’ve had a good time when I lose track of it, which is what I did. It felt right being around young mothers – one making a baby and the other breast-feeding hers. Benefits of breast-feeding are trickling down to offenders from the efforts made by public health nurses and midwives involved in applying this knowledge to incarcerated mothers. These days, a nurse-midwife is giving prenatal care within the prison clinic. Only two years ago, the pregnant women were driven to the midwifery setting in Lakewood.