"Everyone has dreams, a lot of us give up though because ours seem harder to reach..."

I am Dre.

10.28.2014

Hey what’s up? How are you? I’ve responded to all of your letters including your most recent one. But this letter isn’t really responding to any of those letters. I’m writing because I was having a bad day, and you’re the person that I feel most comfortable writing. I really don’t write family or friends when I’m having a bad day because I don’t want to be a burden on them, and I also don’t want to stress them out and have them worry. This is my first time doing this. But I won’t make a habit of it. I know our letters usually consist of the project & ‘the one.’ So I’m not expecting a response back if you don’t want. But writing is kinda like therapy to me, no matter what I’m writing about. I remember you said that it’s not good to hold these things in, cause they may come out eventually, and that could be in a physical way. And I cant afford to be going bald at 19. You know?

I’VE BEEN STRESSED BECAUSE THE PRISON WENT ON LOCKDOWN TODAY FOR NO REASON. THAT MEANS NO MOVEMENT AT ALL. ITS NOT LIKE WE GO ANYWHERE ANYWAYS, BUT I GO TO SCHOOL. AND I’M THINKING THAT THEY’RE GONNA KEEP US ON LOCKDOWN FOR THE WHOLE WEEKEND TOO. THAT MEANS WE WON’T GO OUTSIDE. WE ONLY GET TO GO OUTSIDE & EXERCISE & USE THE PHONE AND ALL THAT ON THE WEEKEND. AND IF WE’RE ON LOCKDOWN, WE JUST HAVE TO WAIT UNTIL NEXT WEEK. BUT THAT’S REALLY NOTHING NEW AROUND HERE. I GUESS I’M JUST TIRED OF BEING LOCKED UP & THIS PRISON LIFE. I ALSO MISS MY FAMILY EVEN THOUGH I’M MAD AT THEM RIGHT NOW. AND I JUST WANT TO GO HOME. YOU KNOW?

I’ve also been thinking about my ex-girlfriend a lot lately. Her name is [name removed]. I’ve been knowing her since I was 13. And, she’s the only girl that I’ve ever been in love with. She touched me in a way that no other girl has, and she has a place in my heart that no other girl has ever come close to. I’m crazy about her but I lost her 2 yrs ago once I lost at trial. I don’t think she really understood my situation until I was convicted, and the newspaper article came out. It was too much for her.

THE WHOLE TIME I KEPT TELLING HER THAT EVERYTHING WAS GOING TO BE OK. BUT I NEVER KNEW IF IT WAS. BUT I FEEL LIKE I HAVE TO TELL FAMILY & EVERYONE OUT THERE THAT EVERYTHING WILL BE OK EVEN IF I DON’T KNOW THAT IT WILL, BECAUSE THEY NEED SOMETHING TO HOLD ONTO IN ORDER TO STAY STRONG & MAINTAIN. BUT I ALWAYS TRY MY BEST TO MAKE SURE THAT EVERYTHING IS ALRIGHT. BUT I JUST GAVE UP AT MY TRIAL.

And once I was convicted, I called [name removed] and she was crying & asking so many questions that I didn’t have the answers to because I was still trying to wrap my head around everything. I tried to tell her that everything was going to be ok, and she told me, “That’s exactly what I said before.” And I didn’t even know what to say & it was also time to get off the phone & go to my cell. That was the last time I spoke to her.

She don’t answer my calls, and I’ve wrote so many times, but never get a response. But even though the years have past, my feelings hasn’t changed. But I know shes moved on & probably don’t want anything to do with me. I think she was more shocked by what she read in the newspaper because she knew a side of me that not many people knew. Not even my family. She knew that we were complete opposites & that I was in the streets, but I kept all of that away from her. Being with her took me away from all of that & gave me a peace of mind.

Part of me feels betrayed that she’s left me hanging because I was always there for her, but a part of me says that this is what’s best, because I want her to live her life & not having to worry or stress about me. But I cant let her go. I try so hard not to call, and I haven’t called in months. But lately, I’ve been feeling like I need her. But I don’t think that’s fair. She’s been in college these past 2 yrs. & probably forgot all about me. But I can’t help but wonder how she’s doing & if she’s alright.

I always told her that no matter what, always treat your self with respect & don’t be like all of the other girls that out having sex & doing everything else under the sun. Always respect your self & your body & carry your self like a lady. That was why I fell in love with her; because she was so innocent & beautiful and also smart. She wasn’t anything like I was used to.

Before I met her, I only played girls/women and I only wanted sex and that’s it. But with her, I never wanted sex. But I did want to be the one to introduce her to it. And I wanted it to actually mean something for the first time in my life, and not just be a ‘Booty Call.’ You know what I mean? But she lost her virginity & grew up, and that really hurt a lot. She lost it while I was locked up. And I’m afraid that she isn’t the girl I used to know. Even though time goes by, and people grow & change, I think your core principles should stay. Last thing I heard about her was that she’s dating girls now, which is fine. I just hope she isn’t dating girls because shes had her heart broken by a guy too many times. Because I remember when we were talking everyday, she cried to me for a week straight because some guy she was dating didn’t want anything to do with her anymore. It was hard seeing her in pain, but it was also hard for me to see how much she cared about this guy. You know?

BUT I DID WHAT I HAD TO DO TO MAKE SURE SHE WAS STRAIGHT. I STILL LOVE HER & I DON’T CARE WHO SHE DATES, I’M NOT TRYING TO GET IN THE WAY OF ANY OF THAT. I JUST WANT MY FRIEND BACK. AND I ALSO FEEL LIKE THIS IS SOMETHING THAT’S REALLY IMPORTANT TO ME THAT I LEFT OUT, AND MEANT TO WRITE BEFORE. BUT SHE ISN’T THE ONLY ONE THAT’S LEFT ME HANGING. I’VE LOST EVERYONE THAT I WAS CLOSE TO; FRIENDS & FAMILY. AS MUCH AS I LOVE MY FAMILY, THEY HAVEN’T BEEN HERE MUCH RECENTLY, I JUST HAVE TO DO WHAT I HAVE TO DO IN ORDER TO WIN, OR PUT MYSELF IN A POSITION TO WIN ON MY APPEAL.

In one of your letters you asked me what music was I listening to, and I wasn’t real specific. But right now, I’m really into 2 songs more than anything; my first is, “Guts over fear” by: Eminem. I’ve been playing it out lately. The female that’s on the song, I really like her voice & how much passion she puts into her music. I think its an artist named, ‘Sia.’ Have you heard of her? I’m a fan of her music too. But I was watching a trailor for a Denzel Washington movie, and the song played for a few seconds, and I’m like, “I gotta hear that.” And I listen to music every morning soon as I wake up, faithfully, and the song came on the music channel that I have on my T.V. and I’ve been hooked every since.

The 2nd song that I’m really feeling is called, “Benediction” by: August Alsina. He’s an R&B artist that I like. And I don’t really know what ‘Benediction’ means, but I’m feeling the song. I’m gonna look the word up though. But I feel that I could relate to a lot of things that he’s talking about on the song. I love listening to artist who share their story in their music. Especially if I can relate. I can feel what they’re going through and kinda understand them a little bit, if that makes sense. That’s why I like Lil Boosie. But maybe you should check them out. Maybe you’ll like them. I’m not sure what type of music your into. But yeah, that’s what I’m listening to right now. I love music.

I watched Derrick Rose speak before their game a few days ago, and he spoke about how one of the reasons why he wants to win a championship is because it may bring peace to the city of Chicago. He said he sees all of the violence & killings & he hopes that he could change the mind-set of the kids out there. So yeah, I think if anyone understands, its him. And to be honest, if it wasn’t for him & the Bulls, my mind-set might not be the way it is today. He inspired me to be somebody, and helped me get back in tune with something that I love (basketball). And im 100% sure that if I followed D-Rose & the Bulls the way I do now, while I was out, I wouldn’t be in prison now. But I cant go back, but theres kids out there that are at risk, and something as simple as having an idol like D-Rose could mean life, death or time in prison for so many kids out there.

There’s so many kids that could probably go pro easily if they got focused & just played. And its not just basketball either. It don’t have to be sports that could make a difference in these young kids lives, it could be anyone. Someone like you that don’t even know them, but got love for them & care about them. All they need is encouragement and someone to tell them that they could be anyone they want.

EVERYONE HAS DREAMS, A LOT OF US GIVE UP THOUGH BECAUSE OURS SEEM HARDER TO REACH BECAUSE A LOT OF US COME FROM NOTHING AND HAVE SO MANY NEGATIVE THINGS GOING ON AROUND US & WE’RE EASILY TAKEN OFF TRACK & INFLUENCED. SCHOOL IS OUR ONLY WAY OUT, BESIDES SPORTS. AND IF YOUR SERIOUS ABOUT SPORTS, THEN YOUR ALSO IN SCHOOL AT THE SAME TIME. BUT A LOT OF YOUNG KIDS PREFER THE EASY WAY OUT BY GOING TO THE STREETS BECAUSE THEY GET THAT SENSE OF FREEDOM THAT WE TALKED ABOUT.

And the teachers don’t even care in some of them neighborhoods. I’m blessed that my mom had me go to go to a school in a different district. But I think encouraging them that school is not ‘lame’ will help. And encouraging the boys to pick up a ball & not guns. And for the girls to be inspired by strong & successful women. You know? Theres a lot that could be done though.

I was watching the Bulls game and Rose sprained his ankle. But the way he walked towards the side line reminded me of last seasons injury. I didn’t know what it was at first. I almost had a stroke. But he’s all good. But I didn’t appreciate them losing to Lebron & company. It’s all good. Theres 80 more games.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Take care.

Dre.