*This and a few following posts, the exact number unknown at this time, are a retelling as accurate as I can give of the several recent dramatic events of my life which have been full of some of the most traumatic experiences that I have ever made it through, but which also lead to some of the most profound and startling realizations and epiphanies of my life. While these entries are not directly about animals themselves, the animals in my own life were impacted greatly by the events that occurred, as well as many of these events causing me to examine the predicaments of the various animals that come into “shelters” and animal control centers everywhere. I have chosen to be brutally honest, and realize while some may judge me, others will appreciate my honesty and hopefully a few will maybe learn something from my experiences. The specifics of which ALL will come to be revealed in the the telling of my story.*
i found that being held “against my will” basically, led to find anything to use in order to pass the time. while it wasn’t like i was going to be held forever, i still didn’t know when for sure i’d be able to see the judge, when i’d be let go, or even if for sure i would be released. and other than books, there was nothing to do. the male cells; the community cells that offered no privacy whatsoever to male inmates also had tv. the female inmates didn’t have access to tv. unless you include the tv in the booking room that the guards watched day and night when things were slow.
one of the tools for “managing to keep cool” was counting time. for instance, using various measurements of time to get you thru it; like it’s 3 hours until lunch. then meds will be distributed 4 hours later….if i can make it just the next 3 hours, lunch will be served and that will preoccupy me, i know i can make it til then! in my case, i also used certain times of the day to make phone calls which also helped keep me somewhat distracted and busy.
somehow i did manage to get up, and called my sister at about 7:30am that Saturday. my thinking was clearer and i new they would need better information to find my car quickly and get it back home. the call was quick and short. upon the conclusion of the call, i knew that it was roughly 4 hours til lunch. i used this next time measure as a goal to focus and keep me patient. at noon i would check in with a friend, who somehow had managed to get their cell phone set up, prepaid with the collect system so that i could contact her. she would also help be a go between twix me and my sisters who were on the road, and who i wasn’t able to get a hold of on their cell phones.
i knew the weather was going to delay them. i called my friend after lunch to check in. she was going to drive into town and get one of my medications. by about this time, not only had she picked up my medications but she had contacted and met with my sisters to give them the meds. My friend had tried to bring them to the jail, but had no idea who to contact to drop them off, nor what door to take them to, and the garfield county staff would not be helpful to her in any way whatsoever. so it would be easiest to just meet my sisters and give the meds to them for the drop off, who know more whereabouts to go at the jail.
the hours continued to tick by slowly. my friend had informed me that my sisters were first going to go get my car, and then would make their way to the trailer to check on the animals. my small personal items had been signed off on to be given to them, so they would have my wallet, keys and cell phone. at about 2pm, i was informed that my medication had been dropped off. i also was informed that that med would be provided that evening.
the medication was for restless leg syndrome, and the previous night i had really struggled without it. i had fallen asleep the night before friday without taking my meds, and so was now two days without my restless leg medication. what little sleep i had gotten friday night, was constantly interrupted by the overwhelming desire to move my legs. in all, i had gotten about 3-4 hours sleep total. and so those hours i was up the chronic need to move my legs was so severe, i literally kicked the wall, the bed roll, and even got up and would kick the cell door. i figured if they were going to make me go a night without my restless leg medication, that staff of the jail would get to endure with me.
the exact time of phone calls made that day, as well as the total number, i can’t recall exactly. i do remember the majority of the conversations the calls, and what was discovered once my sisters had arrived at my trailer.
i believe the first time i spoke with my sisters’ it was approximately 4pm. the oldest sister picked up the phone and accepted the charges. the first thing out of her mouth was declare to me that the trailer smelt awful; of animals, and that it was made worse by the fact that Shyler my Newfie mix, who’s very shy, let her bladder go when they came in (an act of full submission in doggy language). Kelly Jo, my pitbull mix, was in her crate; had been in her crate well over 24 hours, more like 27 hours to be exact! not only had she pee’d in her crate, but she had had been nervously licking her tail.
Kelly Jo has an immunity problem that shows itself in her ears and the tip of her tail; all areas of sensitivity. i had already noticed her “worrying” a bit on her tail, and had taken steps to try and calm her with increased activity when i was home, and also giving medical attention to the tail, but being locked up for so long had pushed her to the edge and her tail was now a mess!
When let out of her crate, happy to see somebody anybody, Kelly’s tail wagged like crazy. excited at being free as well, she ran everywhere, her bloody, wagging tail sending blood flying on the walls, appliances of the kitchen, doors, and anything else in the way. my oldest sister’s rendition of this i only half believed; she had a knack for exaggerating most of the time and i found it hard to believe it was bad!
my third dog, Ave Maria, was ok. she had an “iron tank for a bladder” my sister said, but was happy to be out and just could not get enuff affection! classic Ave` actually!
my sister further went on to chastise me over the condition of the trailer; the cat dishes on the floor, the litterboxes, as well as anything else she could think of. prior to heading up, i had forewarned them; i had told them umpteen times that the catboxes needed cleaning, that the house was a mess and needed a very good cleaning, and that both Moose and Azzy with his litterbox issues, had also created some problems. Moose was spraying due to rivalry with other male cats in the house and Azzy true form, had taken up his litterbox issues and was urinating outside the box. all of this with the recent depression, severe depression i might add, that i had experienced over the loss of my recent job, had contributed to a big fat mess. i had forewarned my sisters about all of this, and upon just starting a new job, had planned on using that friday for running errands that were absolutely necessary and also for getting caught up on all the cleaning and repairs that needed to be done at home. none of this registered with my sister. no matter how many times i told her. for the time being, what with more urgent things needing to be taken care of, we agreed to disagree. i had no idea though, what was really going on here, and of course, had no way of knowing, nor a way to defend myself.
my sister said that they would be staying the night in Glenwood Springs, and then would come back up to do more care for the animals the next day, and hoped to be on the road by late Sunday afternoon. they were going to drive down again to glenwood that night to drop off my other two medications, but because of the weather i told them not to bother; that i’d b ok without them and they could just drop them off the next day on their way out of town. i was trying to make things as simple as possible on them. my sister said i needed to figure out what to do about the animals if i didn’t get out of jail by about 5pm monday. i had a contact in my phone that could be called, a friend, to see if they would come up and handle the animals a day or two until i got out. my sister refused. she absolutely refused to asked anyone to stay at the trailer in the condition it was in, or to negotiate anything less such as my dogs being taken to the local animal services where i could then get them back later, and the friend, who worked on this side of the canyon and lived on the otherside; who drove by my house everday, could stop by and check/feed the cats. nope. she refused. and then she launched into “you’re a hoarder sis! you have a problem and these kind of conditions are not fair to you or the animals! it’s time for an intervention! this has to stop!”
“really?!! you’re really going to use a time like this, when i’m in jail, i can’t do anything not to mention my mental state, to perform an “animal hoarding” intervention when i had told you the state of the trailer and that it needed to be cleaned!!! when i’ve talked to you so many times over the phone and you knew how depressed I’ve been!! after the dogs have been locked inside for over 24 hours without being taken out, fed, or anything else. really?!!”
“yes” she replied. “it has to be done!”
i went around and around with my sister for a good ten minutes, and mind you, the collect calls were limited to 20 max. we ordered a truce, and got back to rescue groups that they might contact to try and help, because my oldest sister refused to call my friend!
what was i to do? i only hoped that i could get out of there as soon as possible, return home, clean up the trailer and resume caring for my pets. i also pray that there wouldn’t be any kind of fall out as i had no idea just exactly what else my oldest sister might be up to, and keeping her mouth shut wasn’t her strongest point!.
a few more calls would be placed to the trailer to speak with my sisters, but we avoided the obvious. i had to explain to them how to feed the animals, not to mention how to feed the dogs and then the cats as well as the kitties who were on meds and with special needs. my mom’s cat Tony being one of them-who i now considered my kitty.
the biggest comfort of that day, was actually the shower i was allowed to have. the water was nice and hot, as the cells were chilly. to be warm and clean was a great comfort! i was also given a clean jumpsuit but in jail, you’re not allowed deodorant so body odor added to the various smells of booking.
9pm came, and my restless leg medication was brought during med distribution. being held in booking, is almost like being held in isolation; you don’t have tv, you don’t necessarily have anyone else to interact with. there’s no computer, no nothing except for a small collection of books to choose from to which you have very limited access. therefore, i took the med thankfully, and slept not only thru the night, but also a good portion of sunday; well into the afternoon for which i was also grateful.