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Tammy’s Wise Woman Letter

cf6528a3-2df3-43ef-95df-37b77b56b8a6Following Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday, we now have #GivingTuesday, a global day dedicated to giving back. On Tuesday, December 2, would you support Truth Be Told in our mission to reach the underserved population of incarcerated women? Most of these women will be back in the community as mothers, daughters, sisters, wives and friends. Your donation provides the resources that help them unlock their potential to build better lives and eventually have the holidays they long for.

In our Talk To Me classes, the facilitator takes the incarcerated women who are our participants through a visualization exercise during which they picture meeting their wiser, older self. Afterwards, they write a letter from that wiser self to their younger self. When she was released, Tammy took her letter with her and recently, shared it with us.

Dear Tammy,

FullSizeRender[1]Life is too short to worry about the small stuff. Wake up each morning and see the light in the day and the beauty it will hold. Don’t hold onto anger. Always tell your children how much you love them. When you go home, you will be looked down upon. Don’t ever forget what you learned about yourself in here. Remember there are blessings in everything and every day. Find them. Let others see your light. Always be open and never judgmental of the situations in your children’s lives. Let them make their own mistakes.

Always ask God to guide you. Always forgive or you will miss God’s blessings for you. Don’t let fear hold you back because in the end it is better that you tried and failed than to never have tried. Be silly! Be goofy! Don’t be afraid because this is the only life you have. You can make it what you want it to be. Always be a part of the game. I want you to have a beautiful life with no regrets. You are wonderful.

I love you.

Tammy is participating in our Beyond Bars Program. She is a Texas Department of Criminal Justice approved volunteer and will be giving back by speaking to the women in our classes through our Beyond Bars goes Behind Bars effort. She will be telling her story and says:

“TBT was one of the most profound classes I took while in prison. I learned more about myself in those classes. The lessons have helped me understand myself beyond bars. I had stuffed my feelings for so long that I took the classes three times. With each time came a better understanding of who I am and who I really wanted to be.

Today life is beautiful! I look at the entire experience as being on my death bed, looking at my life and looking at the things I wish I could change, but still being able to change them. I started my life over when I was released with God being my center. With the lessons I learned from Truth Be Told, I molded my life into exactly what I want it to be. When God is ready to bring me home, I will leave this world with no regrets.”


About Shelley Seale

I'm Shelley, a journeyer and learner of the world, freelance journalist and author, yoga chick and dog lover. I pound the keyboard from home barefoot every day, and while my boss is demanding she also occasionally lets me have the early afternoon cocktail. I think not going into an office or collecting corporate paychecks are very good ideas, though not always profitable. I have written for National Geographic, USA Today, The Guardian, Texas Monthly and CNN, among others. Neither the New York Times nor Johnny Depp have answered my letters yet. I love yoga, indie movies, wine, and books, though not necessarily in that order. I believe in karma. Mean people suck. If I could have any dream job I would like to be a superhero. I have performed a catch on the flying trapeze, boarded down a live volcano and was once robbed by a monkey in Nepal. But, I don't know how to whistle. My mantra is "travel with a purpose."

2 responses »

  1. Wow Tammy –
    You look beautiful and like the woman I met in my class … appealing and warm. I’m so grateful you are home now to live out your “wise woman’s” advice about your life. I honor how quickly you found your center and got grounded on the things you wanted to change in your life. And I especially loved your last lines:
    “With the lessons I learned from Truth Be Told, I molded my life into exactly what I want it to be. When God is ready to bring me home, I will leave this world with no regrets.”
    I too am completing my last semester at the prison, and I too feel that Truth be Told has taught me so many lessons, which will enable me too to leave this world with NO regrets!

    Looking forward to seeing you soon as you share part of your story at the prison! Nathalie

  2. Tammy, you are so inspirational! Thank you for not keeping this to yourself!


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