Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Playing to Win!

So, it's Tuesday and we are just about mid-week and I am about to write a post that my husband will not see. I have sent him every post I have made since I started blogging a little over a month ago. I have to say that the interest in my blog has been overwhelming, to say the least, so thank you all for continuing to read my story.

The reason that this post will not be sent to my husband will be clear in a few short sentences and I am hoping you all will understand why I can't send it to him. Without getting too much into it, I am on my way to have an ultrasound done and, for the wishful thinkers, unfortunately, I am not pregnant. I have known for about 3 weeks now that this test needs to be done and quite honestly it has me scared out of my mind. I cannot and will not tell my husband because of the worry that this will cause him and I will not now nor ever put him in a position of helplessness. Right now, he can do nothing. He can't call and tell me that everything will be alright and by the time he writes to me 10 days will have passed and what could be something, could be nothing.

In the year that my husband has been in prison, he has remained strong and focussed and determined and should he get wind of this, it will undoubtedly throw him off his game and all that he has accomplished to date, will be for not. I won't let that happen.

Now that I have had my test, I must wait 5 days for the results which, if I let it, can easily overwhelm me and throw me off my game and I can't let that happen. My children need me. My husband needs me and I can't let them down for anything in this world. So, while some who read this may say that I am a strong prison wife, really at the core of me I am just a wife and mother who must now play the hand she is dealt and guess what? I WILL WIN!

by Kimberley Ledbetter

Labels: ,

Monday, September 26, 2011

My husband's day

Well, it's Sunday morning and another week is over. That means that my husband is one week closer to coming home. Sunday is, by far, the hardest day for me because this is my husband's day. It was always his day to do whatever he wanted that made him happy and what used to make him happy today was football. You know it may not seem like that big of a deal to some but to me Sundays are huge. I won't lie and tell you that it doesn't usually take a lot to break me. Hell! I've been doing time right alongside my husband for over a year now and, while I've come close, I haven't broken. However, Sunday is a day that will break me...if I let it. The reason that Sunday is hard for me is because my husband always looked forward to this day when he could think about nothing, worry about nothing and just be. Not much was on his mind then except watching a good couple of games and having a few drinks. Now when I think of Sundays and football, I picture him sitting in a day room with hundreds of other men jockeying for the tv just so he can have one moment in the week that can take him from the hell that he is in to a place that he truly enjoys, even if it's only for a few hours. When he was home, he never asked for much so when he wanted this one day just for him, you bet your ass he got it. When he comes home to me and to our family, he will have his day because after everything he has been through and the strength, courage and determination he has shown while inside, he deserves at least that.

by Kimberley Ledbetter

Labels: ,

Saturday, September 24, 2011

The Ties that Bind

Today was one of those days where I was really hoping to get mail from my husband and I was not disappointed. As a matter of fact, I got a card that my husband had somebody make for me. It may have cost him a couple of soups but knowing him like I do it was more than worth it. It was absolutely stunning. At first, I thought it was a drawing for a tattoo that he might want but when I saw that it was in colour I knew that wasn't the case because my husband does not do colour. Then I thought maybe it was a tattoo that he had drawn up for me. Nope. That couldn't be it because no way would I have a skull tattooed on me. There is just no way. Well I opened up one flap of the perfectly folded paper and inside were 3 words - "I miss you" and I just fell to pieces because now I knew what the purpose of this card was. I opened the next flap of the card and there was the most beautiful note from my husband inside. I know that I usually share some of the things that he says to me but I think for just this one time, I will keep this one all to myself. Just know that it made me cry because it was just so filled with his love for me just like everything he has ever written to me.

You know one of my friends said to me a little while back "I don't know how you do it. I would go bonkers if I didn't get phone calls." I guess when you are used to getting calls, you take them for granted a little bit. It's not that you don't appreciate them. You just know the calls will always come and so staying connected to your spouse is a little easier because you can communicate in real time. But when the chips always seemed to be stacked against you and you don't get calls or visits and your only communication is by letter, you quickly realize that you either need to square up and fight for each other or turn turtle and run. Sure it requires a little more effort but that's how we do it and while our conversations are never in real time and could lead to a lot of misinterpretations, in the year that he has been gone, there has not been one time where we have miscommunicated and that is because being together and making it work is the only thing that matters. There is nothing more important to me, in this life, than my husband and my children and I know that the same is true for my husband. He told me once that when he thinks I am upset with him that it's impossible for him to do time so I have never given him a reason to think that I am.

The prisons in the State of Texas may very well be the most ass backwards facilities in the USA and they try their best to keep him down but one thing I know for sure and that is that we cannot and will not ever be torn apart. We are committed and connected. We have a love for one another that is indescribable and together we are unstoppable and those are the ties that bind.

by Kimberley Ledbetter

Labels: ,

Friday, September 16, 2011

Strong Enough

Strong Prison will start awarding a weekly woman who exhibits strong qualities in this journey. The "Strong Enough" award will be given to women, wives, girlfriends, fiances, mothers and more who have overcame boundaries and barriers to live in this lifestyle.

To nominate a woman, email us at annette.ungaretti@yahoo.com and tell us why you think this woman should win the award

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

What do you say?

What do you say to the man you love more than your own life when he declares his love for you in such a way that brings you to tears? There really aren't any words that can sum up the love I have for my husband and the lengths I would go to for him.

Today, I received a 12 page letter from him and that just made my day. Letters are our only form of communication and his words are absolutely priceless to me. I have amassed over 1,000 pages of letters from my husband in the year that he's been gone. Of course he always tells me how much he loves me but today, right when I needed to hear it the most, he said "never ever doubt my love for you cause it will always be there. You have my heart. No doubt."

He tells me I am his rock but I wonder if he knows how much strength I draw from him. It is because of him that I get up every day and do what needs to be done for him and for our family and it is because of him that I haven't fallen to pieces when others might. I've been told how strong a wife and mother I am but I have to believe that anyone else in my situation, with the love I have for my husband, would do the very same thing. Maybe I am wrong. Maybe it is easier to fold like a house of cards than it is to square up and do what needs doing. Maybe there will come a day when I take the easy way out but...today is not that day.

I am a prison wife and there are none stronger. No doubt.

by Kimberley Ledbetter

Monday, September 12, 2011

Why I started thi

I was seeking more than just a comment or a like, or having to had all these people as friends when I really didn't want too. So I began to blog. I blogged about my experiences, everything that it entailed. I wanted to record the goods and the bads, be able to remember it all and share it with my husband and I's future children. Our letters are sacred and I didn't want everyone reading all of them, besides you can get blogs made in books. When I first started this journey just 173 days ago, I felt lost, literally. I live in a tiny town with a total of 3,000 people and didn't know what people would think, who would listen and frankly who would care. So I quickly sought out any kind of support, any. Facebook page, after Facebook page - there were tons and its mostly familiar faces throughout. So as I am blogging away I find myself seeking other women and their blogs, and yet there aren't that many. There are tons of just moms, armed forces wives, but not too many prison wives. In the taboo love we should embrace be proud and besides blogging (writing) can be very therapeutic. I started strongprisonwives.blogspot.com to encourage other women to blog, to write down their emotions because I was having those same emotions. I want to be able to read it like it was, comment to show her love and know I am not alone in this journey. As it progressed, I wondered why is there chat rooms for everything else?The idea blossomed what if I started a chat room, where this women can encourage each other, help each other, share stories, ideas, carpool rides and more. So here I am: there are over five contributing women on strongprisonwives.blogspot.com I just added a spot for petitions and this past Saturday there were seven women in our first ever chat Support Session. My goal is to get the support session to be weekly a different host every week with a different topic, same topic whatever topic from kids, sex, letters, keeping the spice, money, love, MWI anything and everything. We are here together.

I can have up to 100 authors to blog. Anyone interested please let me know.

I am looking for hosts, to set up weeks in advance and topic ideas.

We are always adding links to blogs, petitions or maybe even groups. Anything.

I would love to see the chat evolve where women who aren't all friends on Facebook and don't want to sit and comment and like, can just meet there - use it - its for you.

I won't be on this journey for a lot longer, a fraction of what most women will do, but I want to make my mark help in any way possible, see this grow, bust stereotypes and become a real family.


Saturday, September 10, 2011

The Prison Wife

Have you seen her?

She is everywhere. She is the woman at your office who sits alone in the lunch room and the woman in line at the grocery store or the woman sitting next to you on the bus. She is the woman who races home everyday at lunch just to see if his letter came. She is elated when it does and broken-hearted when it doesn't. She knows that he writes her every day. It just takes 6 days to get here and to her that's a lifetime. She is the woman who lays alone night after night trying desperately to remember what it feels like to fall asleep in his arms. She is the woman who cries in the bathroom at work because he is 3,000 miles away and can't call her and she can't visit. If you knew why she was crying would you care? No one can ever understand the lonlieness she feels.

She is the woman who struggles to make ends meet just so he doesn’t do without the small comforts she can provide him but she will never tell him how she struggles. She loves HIM that much. She is the woman that no one feels sorry for because this is her life; the one she chose. She is the woman who has noone to comfort her when someone she loves dies because the family she thought she knew has abandoned her. She is the woman who must always be strong because he needs her and there is no other choice.

She is the woman that loves him more than her own life; the woman whose heart breaks when he tells her what a loser he is because she deserves so much better than him. She is the woman that reminds him constantly that he is the best man she has ever known. She is the woman that would give anything to make him understand that everything happens for a reason and while he can't see that reason he trusts that she is right. She is the woman who knows that every choice he has made, good or bad, has brought him to this moment in time - to this life with her. She is the woman he protects at all costs from the details of life on the inside. He loves HER that much. She is the woman always wondering if he thinks of her as much as she thinks of him. She is the woman that is just as imprisoned as he is. While his chains bind his arms and legs, hers bind her heart.

She is the woman that drives for hours just to see his face and hear his voice knowing that in a few short hours her heart will break when she must leave him behind. She is the woman that hurts knowing that any privacy he had was gone the moment he walked through the gates. The thought of her husband being shackled with chains is almost too much for her to bear but bear it she must. She is the woman that does not see him as an inmate but as the love of her life. She is the woman they call stupid or naive simply because she believes in him more than he believes in himself.

She is the woman that still gets butterflies when he says "can I ask you a question?". She is the only person in his world that matters and he will do whatever it takes to be with her. She is the woman counting down the days until he is free and they can finally be together the way they were always meant to be. She is his rock and he is hers. She is the reason he is alive. She is the woman that he prays for, the woman that he dreams of and the woman that he fights for. She is the woman that he knows is being faithful even when they all say she isn't. He believes in her. He trusts her like he has never trusted anyone before - with his life. She is his everything. Her words, to him, are priceless and he values her letters above all else.

He is on her mind every minute of every hour of every day. They are connected. They always have been and always will be. He loves her more than words can say. She loves him like no other. He calls her his angel. Together they are unstoppable. Back to back. Their love is undeniable. Nothing else matters.

by Kimberley Ledbetter

Labels: ,

Friday, September 9, 2011

First Chat Session

Meet JoAn Anderson, she met her now husband back in 2001 thru a mutual friend he was locked up with. They started writing and then he was released in 2006. They talked everyday that he was out, and while he was making plans to take the three hour trip to see her, they lost contact. In August 2009, the found each other again, and have been together ever since and married in July 22, 2010.

JoAn will be hosting our first chat session this Saturday, September 10 at 7 p.m. central time. Come chat with the women of inmates, about meeting while incarcerated and what it means, how to adjust, where to go from there and more. Didn't meet your loved one while they were incarcerated? Meet us at 7 p.m. enlighten our topic from your perspective.

Saturday, Sept. 10, 7 p.m. central
Hit "Enter my Chat Room" on the right side bar