Aaron Austin

Perseverance, by Aaron Austin

As a 26 year old black man incarcerated I know what adversity is.I thought I knew what it was young when I came home with black eyes.Ashamed to say I was bulled for being light-skinned with green eyes.I thought I knew what it was when I watched my mother cry her self to sleep or drink her self to sleep everynight over her divorce with my stepfather.Or thought when I got sent to a different elementary,middle school then highschool I faced the adversity of building new relationships and figuring who was safe to trust.Still it took my mothers explanation after she dropped me off on my fathers porch to live at nine to know the definition of real perseverance through adversity.Within her explanation she told me how she got pregnant after her freshman track season and decided to keep her son.How she kept her GPA above a 3.5 all the while working and raising me and her stepson who were four months apart eventually graduating.My mother put that picture of us 3 wth her cap and gown on her graduation day inside my backpack and took our younger sister to move to Cleveland till I began highschool.My grandmother left my mother at 16 to raise her self because she was dealing with her own alcohol and substance abuse issues.Paying bills,studying,doing sports,dealing with everyday choices & adversity she persevered through.When I moved back to my mothers house at 14 already been selling and using drugs for 4 years now.Carrying guns everyday after being struck in the leg as the bullet propelled through a car door and straight through my calf.I brought home more adversity to my mother with a chip on my shoulder about her leaving me thinking she chose my sis over me.As she tried to help me find myself and deter my negative behavior I rebelled as most teenagers do.I found myself as a 4 year varsity letterman in football,3.0 GPA student with multiple suspensions and a one month expulsion on my record.All the scholarships I lost because of one split second choice but it was more than that.It was my attitude and a serious of bad choices that snowballed into that day senior year getting involved in a riot.Coaches stopped calling and returning emails.I graduated by the grace of god and went to college still getting deeper into the streets.The older I got the more determined I got to achieve being hood rich I wanted instant gratification.3 colleges later,12 credits later,2 ohio penal institutions and 1 comptia a+ certification later I’m in prison still persevering each day trying to rebuild a relationship with my mother.

Aaron Austin #711-099
T.C.I po box 901
Leavittsburg,OH 44430

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