After being in prison for over a quarter of a century, it’s always amazing to spend time with females who are not in positions of authority over me. Every young lady in the class brought kindness and sensitivity from the very first evening when they greeted us and introduced themselves, up until the tearful “Goodbyes” that reminded me of why I’ve never enjoyed bittersweet moments. Yeah, I fought back tears as I shook hands with each of them presumably for the last time. With that said, let me share with you my thoughts on the course’s female participants.
Cecily was quiet, yet very intense and intelligent when she did speak. She was a nice, well-spoken English major who might become a wonderful teacher someday if she chooses that path. I will miss glancing over at her from time to time, watching her contort her legs into Lotus position effortlessly, and recalling what it was like when I was young and limber 🙂 .
Schuyler was articulate, pleasant, ad well-rounded. She shared stories about friendship, political activism, and picking apples with her boyfriend. To me, she represented a type of youthful innocence that encompassed what it means to be “wholesome'”. I will miss her warm smile and pleasant demeaner 🙂 .
Maria was shy and a little reserved. She possessed a natural curiosity that I’d notice whenever we made eye contact. It was as if she was always wondering about the answer to an unasked question. She was always very friendly and content to remain in her own personal comfort zone, as evidenced by her self-admitted lack of infatuation with current fashion trends. I will miss her genuinely warm greetings as much as her festively colored socks 🙂 .
Willa was kind, and vocal about her positions on certain topics that were discussed. She always treated everyone with compassion and fairness. I would sometimes watch her and wonder what the future has in store for her. Her warm heart, tempered by her sharp mind, is the type of combination that can lead to success on so many levels. I will miss the trusting look in her eyes that made me feel like being dishonest with her was not an option 🙂 .
Mary-Grace tricked me. My initial impression of her was that she was a little high-strung. Truth be told, I couldn’t have been more wrong about her. She turned out to be polite, attentive, sweet, and very open-minded. Talking with her always made me feel comfortable and confident, as though what I said really mattered to her. I will never forget her interest in whatever was being said during class, or the tears in her eyes as we all said our final “Goodbyes”.
Melissa was, for lack of a better term, simply amazing! Her laid back personality, coupled with her mildly arrogant nature and obvious intelligence, caused me to gravitate toward her. I feel like we had very similar outlooks on what should be important to each of us as individuals. She was funny and easy to get along with, determined to live life to the fullest in the here and now. Her refusal to take things too seriously required the kind of courage that I once possessed, lost, and now hope to regain someday. Of all the outside students, she was the most diverse and edgy, the one who made me smile the most and doubt myself the least. I will truly miss her….and her humorous sideline commentaries 🙂 .
Last but not least is Bryn. She was my favorite (although it was a tough decision, considering all of the wonderful people I met in the class). We often sat next to eachother, sharing whispered comments on points that were brought up during group discussions. Her kindness stood out because it was ultra-feminine in that delicate way that reminds me of why I hate being surrounded by dudes 24/7. Bryn’s gentleness and sincerity has raised the bar for all non-familial females who want my time and energy in the future. If Melissa made me smile the most, Bryn made me feel the best! I will miss her heartwarming smile and the care that went into her words and deeds 🙂 .
So there it is. As I prepare to leave prison, God has once again blessed me… this time the blessing came in the form of a dedicated college professor from an elite liberal arts school, and ten open-minded students, who together were able to remind me of how great it is to simply be alive. This has been a beautiful experience that I will carry with me for the rest of my life!
PS: To any of the students who may someday read this, THANK YOU FOR YOUR BRIEF JOURNEY THROUGH MY LIFE! I WISH YOU ALL SUCCESS, PROSPERITY, AND TRUE HAPPINESS! I PRAY THAT OUR PATHS CROSS AGAIN SOMEDAY UNDER BETTER CIRCUMSTANCES, BUT IF NOT, THEN I PRAY YOU EACH CONTINUE TO ENCOUNTER BEATIFUL EXPERIENCES SIMILAR TO THE ONE WE JUST SHARED!!!!!!
Categories: Vincent Evans