I STOPPED THE BALL
AND I AM GETTING IT ROLLING AGAIN
A legal substance dramatically and drastically changed my life.
I grew up with my mother and her parents who lived with us
because I had an absentee father. I physically resemble his side of
the family with Irish fair skin that easily burns, green eyes, and
naturally curly hair. Unfortunately, I inherited another trait from
him, something that there is no cure for. I have a genetic
predisposition from him to addiction. I learned later on in life I
also have some eerily similar criminal traits. I am a drug addict.
It all began when I played Field Hockey
throughout middle and high school; at least that is where I thought it
did. Once, when my reputation was on the line, I attempted to make a
save as the defender of our goal net against a fierce opponent, and
making a daring move, I stopped the ball. I used a Stick Stop, a
method of trapping and stopping the ball used in penalty corners. The
reason why you use this is because you must stop the ball dead. To do
this, you need to shift your stick to the other side of your body
(back hand). Essentially you are flipping the stick around, and when
trapping the ball you use the middle of the shaft. Also, to stop the
ballís spinning, you need to slightly angle your stick downward. The
pressure of my body weight increased on my knee, as my training taught
me to stay low to the ground and bend, bend, bend at the knee, I fell
We won. But, for some strange reason, for a while, I
As a result of that move, my hip shattered completely,
and I needed a hip replacement, a titanium ball, socket, and joint. I
was hospitalized for one month, followed by six weeks of confinement
to bed, and then three months on crutches. The pain I experienced was
literally, to the bone. My knee, pelvis, and thigh were throbbing so
profoundly, the highest recommended dose of Morphine was barely
helping. I healed slowly and learned to walk with the prosthesis.
After the pain alleviated, the doctors began to wean me off the
medication to avoid withdrawal symptoms. At that point I was almost
pain free without the medication. That was when I experienced the
blissful euphoria of narcotics; I loved the way they made me feel. For
the rest of my teenage years, I had some other medical issues which
resulted in painful surgeries, and more prescriptions were written to
get me more pills.
By the time I was twenty-five years old, I could not
function without this bitter tasting, round, chalky textured tablet,
the narcotic pill. The warmth in my chest once I swallowed these pills
was a guarantee I was going to have a good day, regardless of what I
was faced with. As the medical professionals caught on, I was cut-off.
I knew someone who was a pharmacist into shady
deals. He would forge prescriptions, and while he was on duty at the
pharmacy, I would pick the prescriptions up. It was a never-ending
supply; I never had to worry about where my next fix was coming from.
But, it did end. He was being investigated by the DEA (Drug
Enforcement Agency) and made a deal to wear a recording device to
catch me. I managed to elude federal charges, but compiled many
state-level felonies. He is now released from Federal Prison, and I am
From the beginning of this debacle in 2002, I became
tangled in a web I could not unweave. I established a criminal record
which started out with one charge then, by 2005, aggregated to
twenty-seven Class B Felonies. A Class B Felony is punishable by
serving a minimum of three and a half years to a maximum of seven in
prison. I faced possibly doing ninety-four and a half years in
prison, if the prosecutors sent me to trial for each crime separately.
I was given a break in 2005 with a county jail sentence of one year,
followed by intense probation. I never received any rehabilitation.
Then a series of events occurred; I was the victim of
arson and sustained life-threatening injuries, my marriage fell apart,
and another surgery set me back into a relapse. I was charged with the
same crime in 2007 after having surgery, and I became dependant on the
narcotics again. It is true history repeats itself if you do not learn
from your mistakes. I was sentenced to the State Prison for Women for
two and a half years, minimum. I could, if denied parole, stay for the
maximum of six years.
Unbeknown to me, my father was in and out of prison my
whole life. He robbed pharmacies to support his addiction. I found out
when I built up enough courage to ask my mother what the real deal
with him was. I was twenty-eight years old. Hesitantly, she divulged
everything. I was horrified. I inherited his brains, looks, and his
pretense to defraud pharmacies, just in a non-violent way. I was a
mirror image of him; mind, body, and soul. I feel that he took a lot
of answers to my questions to the grave with him. In 1998, he lost his
battle with addiction.
Currently, I reside in a Transitional Housing Unit, an
old farm building transformed into a house with rooms that sleep a
maximum of eight, and then arrangements become better by progressing
through their system, and privileges increase to individual rooms.
Forty-four women stay there. The farm is a program designed for the
women to get reacquainted with society, obtain employment, and use the
resources the state offers to ensure a smooth transition into the
population as a parolee. I am a mentor and when the need arises, I
escort the women into the community to assist them with complying with
the house rules, offer support and encouragement, and just assure them
that Iíve been there, at the beginning, scared out of my mind, and
they can achieve anything they set their minds to.
Although I got to where I am by unconventional methods,
I am proud to say I am now a full-time student, three months from
reaffirming my identity as a civilian, and for three years I have been
Copyright © 2009 Pink Dougherty