You just got to be on survivor mode, you know. I kind of saw myself as one of those giant squids that change color to mimic its environment. I played the part: I got tattoos. I was bald-headed. And, at the same time, I was portraying like I was cool inside, but … I guess it was fake it until you make it, you know?
I was in isolation, just me, myself, and I, for 20 years off and on. But there were other people around—so you do get a sense of community. They have human hearts. As soon as I got there, they would offer me stuff, like their TV. They thought they had to look after me, and whatever little they had, they offered me.
You know, when I first got out, I got a job right away doing deliveries and merchandising and I had to do everything through a company app. And so I was getting lost on the freeway. Technology was definitely one of my challenges.
The other one is I’m making a lot of mistakes that a young man makes dating-wise, you know? That’s been challenging.
The thing is, I’m about to turn 46. I cannot afford to keep making mistakes. I don’t have the luxury of time. You don’t have that leisure anymore to make the mistakes a young man can make.