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>Letters From My Jailed Deaf Dad

>Another letter arrived from my Jailed Deaf Dad. He wants a subscription to Discover Magazine so I bought it today for his upcoming birthday. 59. Fifty-nine! And he still gets into jailhouse brawls. Sigh.

He wrote to Christian, “Yes I have great time with you. I guess that you are enough good to be my son in law. And I wish you best & happy being with my daughter. Important: No Heavy drinker and use stupid drugs. Promise me.”

He had another tooth pulled. “It is last bottom left tooth. Good thing not front tooth. Ha.” They no longer provide dentures so I’m not sure how he’ll be expected to eat in another year or two.

He received the $40 Christian sent and $20 I sent for Christmas but for some reason they won’t let him have access to it. I have another $20 set aside for his birthday but think I’ll wait to mail it since he will have $60 to spend over the next few weeks.

He tried to send me a Christmas card that they wouldn’t mail because, it “contains illustrations or written messages on envelope.” He enclosed the offending envelope and their write-up sheet as proof that he tried. It is very clear that these “drawings” are from the manufacturer Shoebox. As if that weren’t absurd enough, he bought the fu*king card in their commissary! For some reason, he didn’t bother mailing me the actual card. So I missed another* Christmas greeting from my Jailed Deaf Dad. Thanks TDCJ!

*Last year he was in solitary confinement. So receiving his envelope is a huge improvement. Flashback to December 2003’s card:

Yesterday I received the first note from my incarcerated father since last May. He’s been busy, I guess. It was a Hallmark Christmas card. The front read, “God made all the nights and days and all the world to sing His praise.” The inside read, “The very sweetest song on earth once brought the news of Jesus’ birth – And as we sing His praise today, may you be blessed in every way.”

Then my dad wrote a warm and fuzzy Christmas note in his “deaf speak” handwriting that included this sentence, “I had been [in] solitary confinement four times since April for fighting with n*ggers cause me mad because stealings – all offenders are haters, thief, jealous, etc.”

Looking back at that note makes me realize how he actually has settled down despite the occasional fight. His letters aren’t strewn with so much anger — oh it’s there, just not as much — and I can’t remember the last time he was in solitary. Sure I’m happy he’s settling down a bit, but that also reminds me of how beaten down he is. It’s just a matter of time before he’s just a wrinkled, toothless shell of a once vibrant and magnetic man.

Wants her dad to fight more.