This letter was written by a person incarcerated at New Folsom.
I hope all is well with you when you receive this letter. I received your message earlier this week. I was very surprised by this program. It feels good to know that there are people who care about my struggles during this difficult time.
First off I want to let you know a little bit about me. I am 25 years old, from a small town in California. I've been incarcerated since 2016. This is my first time in prison, yet not my first time of incarceration.
I was incarcerated in Monterey County Jail for three years in a cell living environment with little to no programs or freedom. I arrived at CDCR in 2019. In January 2020 I arrived at CSP-Sac, C facility. This was my first mainline. I was on the mainline for about three months when the pandemic hit.
I would like you to understand that I've been accustomed to being on lockdown or having very little freedom. Out of the three months on the mainline we were on lockdown half the time. In fact, when the pandemic began, I was on a lockdown.
The point is that the entire time of the pandemic till about February 2021 I didn't mind the modified program CSP-Sac adopted because of the pandemic. Yet as I've stated in February 2020 the pandemic isolation got to me.
In the very beginning of the pandemic, I met the love of my life. We've been through a lot and just recently she left me. The lack of physical connection was just too much. If it was not for the pandemic, we would have been married.
We still speak yet it hurts me that my situation and the situation the world is enduring has robbed me of the most meaningful relationship I've ever had. It is hard to stay positive, but I strive to be optimistic.
The restriction CDCR has in place are troublesome. I long for the physical connection of my family and loved ones. I've received a vaccine and they are available to all who desire one. Many inmates distrust the vaccines, they don't realize they are holding back the rest of us who wish to hold their loved ones.
The beginning of the pandemic was strange, it seemed as if it was never going to end. The middle was a standstill it felt very long. Now that we are at the end it seems to be moving quick.
CDCR need to recognize that constant communication, especially physical contact with family and loved ones matter more to a inmate then anything else. I've never had a contact visit and as of February 1st I really need it. I broke for years I never cared about these things, now I need it.
I'm not happy I'm struggling to maintain a front. I've coped my exercising and relying on my faith. I'm a strong minded individual. I've prepared myself since I was a teenager for a life of incarceration. Yet I've broken down.
Although I've "prepared" for this life I change or redefined myself completely two years ago. I want a better life for myself. This pandemic has stepped my progress I could have earn more milestones and furthered my education if it wasn't for this pandemic.
I hope you've had a good insight in my life. Remain strong and safe we’ll get through this.
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