The first huge heartache was the divorce, when my baby boy was 1.  READ Shutuppayourmouth! Invaluable Practical Tip – Don’t Talk! Keep your MOUTH SHUT! BAXTER 

The second is that since my drug crimes, my son is not talking to me. 

After the divorce, I worked part, part time. Whenever I wanted to spend 1/2 day, 9 days, 30 days, with my son, I did.  Whenever he did not have school, I went to pick him up, though it was 45 minutes each way from my apartment to “the mansion I bought when she was pregnant”.  I also picked him up from school nearly every day. We’d go to the park, or McDonalds, or the library for a while, then I took him to Mom’s. Man, he used to come running when he saw me. Lit up my heart, and I knew I was doing the right thing.

The most I made in any one of those 16 years was $14,000, and I turned down some very handsome job offers. But I would not trade that time with my boy for all the money on Earth.

We had a ball, swimming nearly every day, reading, going to movies [I had an apartment about a mile from Universal Studios in Orlando, and when it opened we spent lots of time there, eating – my job gave me free food at the restaurants. It also got me free passes to all of the Amusement Parks ], window shopping, and going to the movies.  OMG, I must have seen a zillion movies. The worst, which we saw when Baxter was little, was The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Movie, and when it was over, Baxter was a little embarrassed as I stood up and said in a loud voice: “Thank God, it’s over!”  lol  Many other parents laughed.

The first 4 or 5 years were rough, because every time Her Majesty came to pick him up, my son would cry and cling to me  … you’d think she was going to take him home and torture him! It was upsetting to see him so distressed.  But no, she was a good Mom. It was just because I spent every minute with him.

If anyone had said to either one of us at any time during those 17 years: “The day will come when you will not speak to each other”, we both would have said: “You must be crazy!”  Well, that day has come. He was talking to me when I went to prison, and wrote letters too.  But Her Majesty changed that. Have not seen him since he was 16, and now he is 31.  I had to look twice when I found him on LinkedIn; he had grown up! But there he was  “that’s my boy!”.

When I can, I will go find him. Praying he doesn’t say: “Get lost, Dad”.

Moral of the story: Don’t commit a crime; the consequences can be worse than imprisonment, the guilt, bankruptcy, homelessness and all the other bullshit!