When I first went to jail in Orlando, I was freaked out and so very alone. I got to talk to my former partner Zack and my other former partner (we were in a triad at the time), but those calls were limited and I spent the majority of time bawling my head off.
I needed to write about my pain. In the worst way.
I did not know how to get pencil and paper yet (through the commissary) and when I did, I ordered it right away. Still, it took a couple more days before I laid hands on writing utensils.
In the meantime, I came up with a creative way to “talk” to my friends and lovers.
I typed on the computer to them. Not a real computer, of course, but a keyboard hovering in the air in front of me. And I typed. A lot.
I was put in my own cell for a few days, which was heaven because I could pee and poop in a tad of privacy except for the one wall made of bulletproof glass.
Once in a cell with other women, the peeing and pooping was entertainment for them and I did everything in my power to wait until they were gone from the room; not always possible. Being extremely fat, it remains one of the most embarrassing experiences in my life, this doing bodily functions in a room with 3 other women.
But, at first, I was still by myself. No one to talk to except the tearfully short conversations to my partners.
So, as I said, I wrote on an invisible computer.
I poured out my fears, sadness, confusion and concern that I would never leave jail ever ever. (Which was ridiculous, but I could not be convinced I would not die an old woman in there.) I wrote to my Disney newsgroup friends, telling them how, as I tried to go to sleep, I would “ride” It’s a Small World or even the WEDWay PeopleMover, rides I knew by heart. I told them how I could hear the music, the announcers, feel the PeopleMover slowing at the right spots or flew over Captain Hook on the Peter Pan ride.
I wrote about how I laid on the flat mattress with no sheet or pillow and only a wafer-thin blanket in this freezing place, singing songs from a myriad of Disney movies. Over and over in my head, I would pull Disney memories and walk or rode or sang them to myself. And I told my friends this as I typed the soundless clickity clack of invisible keyboard keys.
I was absorbed in my “discussions” with my friends. Sometimes in non-existent chatrooms, all of us sharing stories of what we were doing that day or where we would go on our next Disney outing.
So when I heard knocking on the window and looked up, I was rather surprised to see 5 faces watching me. I did not stop typing, my fingers mid-air, moving continuously.
“What the fuck is she doing?”
“That bitch is crazy!”
“They better not put her in with me.”
I glanced up again to see a couple rolling their eyes at me as the all turned away to do something else in the Day Room.
And I smiled that they could really have thought I was crazy… and might just leave me alone to my writing.