Letters From Lockdown

Feb 18, 2024By Robert Woldhuis
Robert Woldhuis

Letters From Lock Down | 84 Square Feet Episode 3 Letters Dated Nov 6 and 20, 2011 

Hey there, welcome to another edition of 84 Square Feet! My name is Robert, and I'm excited to take you on a journey through the world of solitary confinement. In this video, we're going to dive deep into the realities of isolation, based on my own experiences. Through the letters I wrote while in prison, we'll explore the raw emotions, challenges, and little moments of hope that emerged from my 2-year stint in solitary confinement in Ely, Nevada.

Solitary Confinement and Its Impact

As someone who has lived through it, I want to share with you the true nature of solitary confinement. It's a form of punishment where individuals are isolated in small cells for extended periods, with minimal human contact. It's meant to induce self-reflection and rehabilitation, but the reality is far from that.

The toll it takes on mental health and overall well-being is profound, leading to loneliness, depression, and even psychological trauma.

Early Morning Motivation
My Solitary Confinement Cell while I was a guest at Ely State Prison

Let me take you back to that time of my life, where my world shrank to the size of a 6x14 foot cell. I'll share with you the circumstances that led to my time in isolation and how I found myself wrestling with my own demons. Through my letters, you'll get a glimpse into the daily challenges, mundane happenings, and the profound thoughts that occupied my mind during those days.

84 Square Feet Solitary Confinement Documentary
One of the first letters I wrote home

Through reading my letters, I want to bring you into my world through the words that I wrote to my mom. These writings were my lifeline, my way of connecting with the outside world.

Within the pages, you'll find hopes, fears, and the longing for connection.

I'll share snippets of these letters to give you a better understanding of the struggles and the moments of resilience that emerged from the depths of isolation.

Isn't it great how some scriptures can speak directly into a moment?
84 Square Feet Solitary Confinement Documentary
A Copy of my initial book request form for approval

Despite the challenges, I was determined to use my time in solitary confinement to grow and change. I'll share with you how I immersed myself in reading, finding solace and inspiration within the pages of books. Education became my escape, my way of broadening my horizons and renewing my mind. I'll also discuss the obstacles I faced in seeking personal growth within the confines of the prison system.

84 Square Feet Solitary Confinement Documentary
My Inmate Identification Card from the Nevada DOC

In sharing my experiences and letters from prison, I hope to shed light on the harsh realities of solitary confinement and its profound impact on individuals. My journey is not just unique to me—it represents the struggles faced by many within the prison system.

It's a reminder to extend empathy, support, and understanding to those who are trying to rebuild their lives after incarceration.

Together, let's work towards a society that values rehabilitation and second chances for all.

I hope my personal perspective has brought you a deeper understanding of the complex world of solitary confinement. If you have any questions or want to share your thoughts, feel free to reach out. Stay tuned for the next episode, where I'll be addressing viewer comments about my experience in solitary confinement.

Be blessed and be a blessing, wherever you are.

- Robert J.

**Are you looking for the books that I mentioned in the video? 

Larry Lea: Could you not tarry one hour https://amzn.to/3HZ4DFU

Casey Treat: Renewing The Mind https://amzn.to/42ETBiK

The Message Version Bible https://amzn.to/3OIK5W6