The solicitors words had delivered a vicious blow to my stomach. I was wounded.
I couldn’t believe what I was hearing, why did D allow my children to go there, all of them? “mummy would be so happy. I must be cursed after all, well! how could it be possible for one person to endure this.
The solicitor was very concerned, when he saw me breakdown. “The children are being well looked after“, he said. I started to cry again. That’s all I ever did, bucketfuls. How could I explain in one visit all that mummy had done? How could I explain that mummy hated me, that she will use this as an opportunity to wreak revenge?. Further, what was the point I was in prison. I felt like a deflated balloon.
The solicitor got up to leave, he advised that he would ask my mother to bring the children.
“Chance would be a fine thing” I thought”. He shook my hand and told me I would be out soon, as if to reassure. In actual fact I didn’t want my children to come, how would I cope.? As he was about to leave I informed him that I didn’t want to see the children.
The prison guard came back to open the door and let us out, She seemed pleasant. I cried again, totally inconsolable. “Ie’m going to lose my children” I said as I continued to cry all the way back to my cell.
We were always locked in for 22 hours a day. I really didn’t mind though, as I could be alone with my thoughts.
That night a strange thing happened to me. After crying myself to sleep I woke up in the middle of the night, I had no idea of the time as I had no personal items of my own. I had a nightmare in which all my children were taken because the judge gave me life in prison. What a nightmare that was.
When I woke up I recall sweating. It was pitch black in the cell. It was a condition that no prisoners were allowed to have any lights on throughout the night. I sat up in my bunk, terrified as usual. The feelings of panic came over me as my eyes tried to see in the dark. Then I was certain I heard a whisper.
Something said to me “pray”
It was such a vivid message that I looked around quickly, was my mind playing tricks on me?. I felt a presence it was if someone was standing by me. I thought it was the murderer in the bed next to me. I was prepared to defend. But it wasn’t, as I recall her breathing heavily during her sleep.
Scared! I covered my head completely and I started to pray. I didn’t know how to pray but I know I begged God to take me out of this place, or at least make it easier to bear. Then I did a bad thing, I made a promise to God that if he took me out of the prison or made it easier for me. I would keep reading my bible everyday. I didn’t say I would be saved, as satan still had a hold on me, Finally I asked GOD, “please if you are real show me a sign” I can’t take it in this place God please”. I know I was crying during that prayer, or conversation with God.
I cried myself to sleep, but then! I had a vision, where I saw this tiny bright light. This is a memory I can never forget. It was completely black, I recall but there was a definitely a tiny light at the end. I knew I saw it. No one could ever convince me that I didn’t. That light still lives in my memory today.
I didn’t understand what that meant, once I woke up I was really puzzled about the light. The thought stayed with me throughout the day. Did God really hear me? Was this the proof that God actually heard?
I sat up in my bunk and thought about God, then I thought about D, crazy thoughts were going through my mind. I imagine them having sexual intercourse, how he spoke to her, what she was wearing, I tried very hard to get these thoughts out my mind. Prison was not the place I wanted to be. Somehow, my mind would always wonder back to the light. It became a form of reassurance.
My crazy thoughts continued until early morning I heard the prison officer call.
Medical!. Prisoner number cf9495. That’s was me. I thought.
I was taken down to the medical room, and seated before a doctor, he was a really nice man, “Good morning” He said. ” I have been reading your file”. I tried to explain that I felt ashamed for being here, the doctor looked at me and said, “you shouldn’t be here, I can see you don’t belong here, but I have some news for you that will make my job easier and your time in this place more bearable. He smiled at me. I didn’t know what the doctor was talking about. Until he said.
“You are pregnant”
Well I nearly fell off the chair, but I couldn’t be. Me and D only slept together once.
Suddenly my problems seem lighter I had something else to think about. In a strange way I felt relieved. I thought of the light was this what the light meant? was God really coming through for me?. Then I thought of the vomiting, a few months back and when I was lying on the floor, I thought of the canteen food, that I thought had poisoned me. I was pregnant all along.
The doctor said to me. “I’m going to arrange for you not to do any more chores, no folding up of clothes. I’m going to, arrange for you to have fruits everyday, any problem you request to see me” My blood condition coupled with my pregnancy gave me preferential treatment. This doctor had found favour with me.
Was this God? Or coincidence,?
I didn’t understand but I recall going back to my cell, feeling different from when I left. I was pregnant with my fifth child. How careless could I have been? Was it carelessness, did God know I would go to prison? was this his way of saving me from the hell I was in? Too many questions so little answers.
My time at Holloway prison ran fairly smoothly after that. After being checked by the doctors, I was sent for a scan. This was another battle for me as I was taken to a maternity hospital outside the prison. I was handcuffed, I don’t know why I thought I would be going to another block in the prison, until we came out the van and I saw normal people. As I stepped off the van, my anxiety was back like a bang. There was no way on Gods earth I was going down the streets in handcuff. ”
I’m not going, I said.
You cannot refuse, what about the baby? The officer said. At that point I didn’t care.
On the streets. I begged the prison officer not to do that to me, I would rather not go to the clinic, she advised me that she would take the handcuff off once we were out of the buildings. I couldn’t even do this, please I beg you, not the handcuff on the street. I refused to go. She ordered me, but I stood firm like a dog on a leash.
The next time I saw the doctor, I asked the doctor if he could allow me to go clinic without the handcuffs and he agreed.
When I arrived at the hospital and was checked, I was surprised to find I was already 20 weeks pregnant. I was pregnant and didn’t know, no wonder I acted so crazy that morning. I was hormonal. Would the judge take this into consideration? For the remainder of my time in Holloway a prison, I felt in a strange sort of way that God was looking out for me.
But gradually. As I settled in to way of life, satan made me believe it was coincidence.
I had another three weeks in the dreaded place. I felt so alone, and unloved. I had no other visitors. I watched as each day VOs (visiting orders)were given out. Each time they would pass my room, I didn’t take one as I had no one to come. However, one day, I was called by the prisoner officer, apparently remand prisoners, which I was, didn’t need a visiting order.
I had a visitor….