Tony says: “… coming here I call it work and probably a safe haven…”

“Everything’s quite good actually. I’m in my supported living after the crap that went on with my ex- and the placement for my rehab. But yeah, luckily for me my key worker stuck by me. Yeah, I was in there and that was going well. I went in there October, so that’s six months in. I’m doing really well here to be fair. I think everything was going well.

I thought right, this ain’t good because I’m going to court and I’m on a suspended sentence. I’d already went into court for something I probably shouldn’t have got sent away for and got a suspended sentence that time and I thought there was no way I’m going to go in again and walk out. I just thought it’s not going to happen. I thought maybe the system … even though I was doing really well, I thought will they be sympathetic and for some reason I just had all negative … I tried to carry on as normal. I think I did until about May-ish and as it got closer … I think they gave it two months before I could go back in, so it was two months of waiting. I think the first month I cracked on to be fair and obviously I was hiding it, but I was quite worried, and I thought just keep busy. Then obviously I had a bit of a … three weeks, I just disappeared … which is what I’ve done in the past, just disappeared. I just thought I was going to go again. My disappeared is prison. That’s what I thought to be fair. I think I thought is there any point, not carrying on here, I’m going to lose all that.

I was like what am I going to do because I’ve been seeing my daughter regularly again and having good times with her and then I disappear again, it’s not going to be good for her, bless her. Yeah, I sort of gave up, I think. I shouldn’t have really because … I just went in my bubble I suppose of like I’ve got three weeks to go. I suppose I pushed that fuck it button. I stopped taking my meds which wasn’t a great plan. I think I ran out and my sleeping patterns went crazy again. It wasn’t good…

I think I thought it was easier just to say goodbye by just stepping away for a couple of weeks before I go into prison… not the best idea really because in the end it was ok, but I honestly … 95% of me thought … probably more than that to be fair … yeah, I look back on it and I think I should’ve just carried on.

Then obviously court day came, I packed a bag … I know Chris could see it. I think he said didn’t he. As soon as the court … fair play to them, they took in everything and yeah, gave me another chance which I’m very grateful for and once I heard those words, I’m giving you a suspended sentence, I changed … a massive weight gone. It was like closure as well.

I was doing really well and then dipped and now I feel like I’m probably at the highest I have been for a long time. Yeah, since court I’ve just been able to crack on, doing new stuff out here. Yeah, just getting on with my life to be fair. It’s nice. I’ve got my daughter, doing football. There’s so much I could’ve lost. Everything’s going so well I think wow.

It’s a massive, turning point like weight and closure done. Yeah, even though I got a suspended sentence for two years, yeah, it’s not great but as long as I stick to what I’m doing I’m sure it’ll be ok. I’ll smash my hours out. I’ll smash them out … easy peasy.

Straight back on it really, I think. Literally that day I got out of court … Chris, I’ll see you tomorrow. That was it and now we’re three, four months on.

Yeah, I’m looking forward to what 2023’s going to hold. It’s been a rollercoaster ride. There’s so many … yeah, you get there and then there’s a massive boom, but then somehow you come back up and then you go back down again and come back up. I think I’m waiting for a down though.

I can’t really grumble with life at the minute. I’ve got stable accommodation.

I’ll get into some sort of good work after Christmas. I don’t know what it’s going to be because obviously I’ve been doing the extension with Graham and to be fair, I didn’t think I could get hands on with that sort of stuff, but I’ve actually been enjoying it.

I’m learning a lot. I might get my CSCS card. I’ll have to see what happens. I know you’d probably start off as a skivvy or whatever, you know, but you’ve got to start somewhere. I’ve got mates who are probably on sites and are looking for people. The maintenance would help. I quite enjoy that. I’ve been on that for four weeks. So, maybe there’s another door there.

LandWorks, coming here I call it work and probably a safe haven… I probably will be a bit sad to be fair to go, but I feel like I’m ready to go now … not right this … I think giving me until Christmas is perfect. It gives me … yeah, like I’m ready, but it gives me those couple of months just to get ready and I think that’s a good time to get into work, the new year.

I find I budget better now … a lot better. I’m not saying I’m saving loads of money or anything but yeah, I’m doing alright … bills and just keeping on top of everything. I think getting a job will give me some extra money which will be good, but I’ve got to make sure it is financially ok.

It’s an exciting chapter. This is coming to an end. I’ve been stuck for a while, but now I can push forward. I think I’ve been … within the last year I’ve been pretty good, just the thing with the court was a little knock down. To be fair I made it worse than it should’ve been really. To be fair the outcome was relieving, but it says a lot, I suppose, as well.

It’s just getting somewhere stable now, something like a proper home I suppose, a family … I say a family home, for me and my daughter.”

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