That’s Institutionalized – My Greatest Fear

Fear of self is the greatest of all terrors, the deepest of all dread, the commonest of all mistakes. From it grows failure. Because of it, life is a mockery… ~ David Seabury


That’s Institutionalized is a blog series about inmates. The series showcases the anonymous writings of inmates in Virginia. The writings include narrative accounts of past lives, convictions, dreams, and future plans.

 My Greatest Fear

Below is an anonymous assignment written by an inmate.


What is my greatest fear? That’s a good question to think about. To be honest…I have a lot of fears. I worry a lot. My greatest fear is falling. Falling off and losing it all. Falling off a cliff, or a house. My other greatest fear is to see my family dead, and it’s out of my control. I believe everyone fears that, though. I also fear that I will relapse into my addiction and violate my probation, which could make me come back to jail. Overall, I fear this place in jail. I fear the cell and who I am becoming in this place. I don’t want to be locked in a cell. In jail, I fear a lot…but not all the time. Sometimes it can hit me all at once. Maybe that’s what fear is…something that moves around to find you. When it finds you, it hits you all of a sudden. It holds onto you until you find a way to shake it, which is the hardest part. I guess I’m always trying to shake it off. I’m trying to get away from the fear.


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