We’re so happy that Marissa Alexander made it home and while she is on house arrest, there’s nothing more important to the mother of three (who served three years time for firing a warning shot at her husband Rico Gray) than the time she’s able to spend with her children. Alexander was facing 60 years, but was recently awarded house arrest. But what about her children in those three years that she was put away?
Marissa appeared on Melissa Harris-Perry’s show to talk about her case and her life, in her own words. What she revealed was sad, but somehow still hopeful. Marissa’s youngest daughter was a year old when she went into prison and she surprised her at school once she was released. In the above video, you can see Marissa’s 4-year-old recognize her and run to her–grab your tissues. Then there’s her teenager twins–a boy and a girl–who were young enough at the time she went in, to sleep with her in bed at night. Now, they’re teens with phones permanently attached to their hands. Time has gone on since Marissa’s whirlwind of legal madness.
Check out what she said to Melissa Harris-Perry:
“You have to spend the extra time and effort to really connect with the kids. For one thing, my kids were in a transition of going to teenage years, so it was a little bit difficult. You know, that’s the time when they’re into their electronics and your parents aren’t as cool.
When I left we were all in the bed together, sleeping together and when I came back everybody was on their cell phones and on laptops. But one of the things that I did, I continued to write them. I did call them. I didn’t push them to come and visit if they had things that they wanted to do. I wanted to make sure that they had some normalcy.
But when I got back home, I realized just how much they had missed me. My teenage daughter had all of my clothes that she was wearing while I was gone, just my sleeping clothes because she wanted some type of closeness to me.
So those are the things that I did. I made sure that I wrote, I called and allowed them to have a life and not be tied down because I was.”
For four years (three in prison and one under house arrest, so far), Marissa had been fighting a losing battle for her freedom. While she’s “free,” she still is under lock and key and has a felony on her record. This will obviously effect her life and ability to provide for her children. Before Marissa even touched the trigger, she’d racked up three strikes–she’s Black, a woman and a domestic violence survivor. She’s a resilient woman and we’re hoping this incident becomes a distant memory of her past.