Fear and Love in Texas Essay

Submitted By aguzman297
Words: 1484
Pages: 6

Ashley Guzman

Fear and Love in Texas When I was twenty one I moved to the great state of Texas. Marriage was the farthest thing from my mind, as I had a world to conquer-- far away from the slow goings of sweet home Alabama, and I wasn’t going to let anything stand in the way of that-- not even love. But soon I met Ray, who had other ideas -- and because I knew that he was the only man I wanted to conquer this world with, we were married six months later. It was blissful and sweet. They were the best days of my short- lived life, until the morning I got a call that shattered my whole existence. Ray may not be coming home. He had made some very foolish decisions as a young adult and in the great state of Texas certain mistakes meant paying for them for a very long time. Ray was still answering for his decisions when we met. He was also, simultaneously, making some very unsavory choices in their stead. Money was hard to come by. We were young and newly married, so sometimes easy money was what had to be made. But I knew him and I knew he was a good man. Little did I know, these decisions would catch up fast and the unforeseen, or should I say disregarded, consequences would be played out shortly after we were married. Ray might possibly go to prison for ten years. Ten years is a long time for a twenty- one year old girl seven hundred miles from home. Suddenly, I was terrified-- a lost little girl, crying and looking for help from the one person who couldn’t be there--until I heard another cry, the cry of our three month old baby, Janzen -- who would only see her daddy through a three- inch thick fiberglass partition and only speak to him through a phone for twenty minutes, two times a week. He was going to miss her first words, her first steps. Her first day in kindergarten was going to be a line I dropped to him in a letter, read not first by him, but by the guards whose job it was to secure him. That to me was the same as not having a daddy at all. I wasn’t going to let that happen. I wasn’t going to let the nightmare of being a statistic, or being alone, scare me into running back to Alabama and away from the life I knew I wanted, with the man I loved more than anything. Fear wasn’t going to consume me; it was going to drive me. Within an hour of hanging up with Ray I was on the phone with the best attorney money could buy. The one problem, was that I didn’t have any money, not any that would matter at least. I had exactly twenty seven dollars; just enough to get some diapers for the baby and buy a pack of cigarettes. There was that pang of fear again. How was I going to get the money to pay for this? I had to get a job. Getting a job was not an easy affair because living forty five minutes outside anything that might be called a town, and not having a vehicle, presented its own set of obstacles. I could feel the fear bubbling inside me, threatening to eat me alive again, so I faced it. I traveled down inside the murkiness of my soul, and I found that fear; I grabbed it by the throat and brought it back out with me, knowing that as long as I controlled it there was nothing that could stop me. The first few weeks were the hardest. Explaining to my mother what had happened was like being led to the guillotine, and then telling her that I wasn’t coming home was when my head rolled. I endured sleepless, worried filled nights and more tears than I thought were humanly possible to produce; when I did sleep, my dreams were filled with terror. I was a lone tree in a huge field with no shelter, being pushed and pulled by both wind and rain, feeling like at any moment my roots would be ripped from the ground and I would be swept away into the dark thunderstorm of my life. Somehow I persevered. About three weeks went by before I found a job. A friend of mine offered to hire me at her bar and give me a lift until I could get a ride of my own. I was elated at the small victory and thrilled that I would finally have