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Existence

Jeffrey Shockley ES4796


Hello Community of Survivors. What a wonderful topic, as I also have pondered the relativity of existence, albeit from a different perspective.

From the moment we begun serving time, repeatedly, or in the case of a life sentence, continually, where does our existence lie? Is it merely gaged by the 15 minute phone call or the once yearly in-person, twice weekly virtual visiting?

How much do we exist in the lives of those we claim to love when the hurt of yesterday lingers eternally? What does our existence mean to those making decisions relating to receiving an opportunity to return to the communities we hale from?

In the examples of the positive characters mentioned like Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. whose existence in history remains, I ask why? Because of the impact they've had on the world from what they've done or is it by who they were as individuals? Likewise there is Jeffery Dhamer, Charles Manson whose existences neither can be denied because of what they've done or is it by who they were as individuals?

Every persons, every events existence clearly matters differently, collectively and individually, whether it is because of an action taken in our lives that outshines the individual component, or does it make the individual?

The furthest reaches of the world may not know I exist, though clearly I do, does not make me any less of an individual; nor does sitting in prison serving a life sentence compliment my individuality in a world I am not fully aware of but certainly exists.

So as we strive, embarking forward ask to whom does my existence matter? And why?

Is my existence realised because of what I've done in my life or by the character of the individual I am especially when no one is looking? Do I matter enough to myself to strengthen my existence to myself though the world may not know me?

As survivors we matter to each other because of this shared reality. We may not know each individually, however we exist in togetherness and that makes me... stronger.

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Ginger Graves
Ginger Graves
May 03, 2023

Thank you!


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