Artwork for podcast Shining Brightly
Incarceration to Inspiration = JUSTICE With Alana Moor
Episode 474th October 2023 • Shining Brightly • Howard Brown
00:00:00 00:39:46

Share Episode

Shownotes

Episode Summary – FROM PRISON TO PURPOSE –

IMAGINE 81 MONTHS IN A PANAMANIAN PRISON AND REBUILDING A MEANINGFUL LIFE. In Episode 48 of the Shining Brightly Podcast Show (links in the comments) titled INCARCERATION TO INSPIRATION = JUSTICE, I am joined by Alan Moore an aspiring stylist in the fashion world that was asked to take a trip to Panama and bring back a package. She new in her heart of hearts she was being used as a drug mule with promises of career launch and access to stars. Faced with the harsh reality of being in a foreign country and not knowing the language, Alana had to think about her new reality of prison survival and what type of life she could make during her time there. Alana will give us a preview of her “tell-all” book  and share raw prison life and her ability to help other incarcerated women take a positive step forward each day. The real Justice is her 18-month-old son that does fuel her passion to create the best life for herself and son as a author, motivational speaker, and transformative life coach. Come listen, download, share and review this POWERFUL SHOW you do not want to miss!

Mentioned Resources -

Website - https://alanamoor.my.canva.site

Instagram- @alanamoorspeaks

TikTok– @speakupmoor

Facebook- https://www.facebook.com/alana.moor

 Giveaway Offer - 50% off your first 4 coaching sessions when send me a DM that says

"Shining Brightly"

 

About the guest

Alana Moor's life took a dramatic turn in 2015 when she was sentenced to 81 months in a Panamanian prison for international drug trafficking, having trusted a client connected to a famous music artist who promised to elevate her fashion dreams. During her 4.5 years behind bars, Alana found strength through self-discipline and daily exercise, emerging not just as a survivor but a thriver. After her release, she founded a foundation aiding incarcerated women, became a certified mindset life coach, and is now a fierce advocate for formerly incarcerated Central American females. Alana's writing a tell-all book, with a mission to impact a million young lives, and as a motivational speaker, she blends raw honesty with humor to inspire resilience and the power to overcome adversity. Afull-time mother to her 18-month-old son, Justice, she embodies the positive ending to her Panama journey, dedicated to uplifting others on their paths of transformation.

About the Host:

Howard Brown is a best-selling author, award-winning international speaker, Silicon Valley entrepreneur, interfaith peacemaker, and a two-time stage IV cancer survivor. He is also a sought-after speaker and consultant for corporate businesses, nonprofits, congregations, and community groups. Howard has co-founded two social networks that were the first to connect religious communities around the world. He is a nationally known patient advocate and “cancer whisperer” to many families. Howard, his wife Lisa, and daughter Emily currently reside in Michigan, and his happy place is on the basketball court.

Website: Http://www.shiningbrightly.com

Social Media

Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/howard.brown.36

LinkedIn - https://wwwlinkedin.com/in/howardsbrown

Instagram - @howard.brown.36


Thanks for listening!

Thanks so much for listening to our podcast! If you enjoyed this episode and think that others could benefit from listening, please share it using the social media buttons on this page.

Don't forget to subscribe on your favorite podcast app so that you do not miss future episodes. And while you are there, it would help us get the word out to more people if you could leave an honest review.


Subscribe to the podcast

If you would like to get automatic updates of new podcast episodes, you can subscribe to the podcast on Apple Podcasts or Stitcher. You can also subscribe to your favorite podcast app.

 

Leave us an Apple Podcasts review

Ratings and reviews from our listeners are extremely valuable to us and greatly appreciated. They help our podcast rank higher on Apple Podcasts, which exposes our show to more awesome listeners like you. If you have a minute, please leave an honest review on Apple Podcasts.

#AlanaMoor #MotivationalSpeaker #Advocate #Empowerment" #Prision #incarceration #rehabilitation #fashion #style #foregiveness #comapssion #life #lessons #panama #book #author #coaching #speaker #motivation #education #inspiration #podcast #download #listen #share #charity #shiningbrightly

Transcripts

Howard Brown:

Hello, it's Howard Brown. This is the Shining

Howard Brown:

Brightly Show. This is the podcast with the best and the

Howard Brown:

most interesting guests ever. I am the maestro with the mic and

Howard Brown:

oh my god, this is a show that is going to just hit you

Howard Brown:

emotionally. And it's amazing. It's going to inspire you as

Howard Brown:

well. I want to introduce Alana Moor, a lot of Welcome to the

Howard Brown:

Shining Brightly Show.

Alana Moor:

Howard, I'm good. Thanks for having me. So

Alana Moor:

grateful to be here.

Howard Brown:

Well, you're all the way across the country and

Howard Brown:

British Columbia. I want to tell you, this woman is so

Howard Brown:

courageous, and has a lesson to teach. And I just am so thrilled

Howard Brown:

to be introduced you recently. Let me take a little read of

Howard Brown:

your bio, and then you can add some stuff in and fill in the

Howard Brown:

blank. So Alana Moor's life took a dramatic turn in 2015 when she

Howard Brown:

was sentenced to 81 months in a Panamanian prison for

Howard Brown:

international drug trafficking. That's four and a half years of

Howard Brown:

this young woman's life. She trusted a client connected to

Howard Brown:

some famous, famous music artists, you are promised to be

Howard Brown:

elevated in to your fashion dreams. And then things went

Howard Brown:

haywire. Oh my god. You actually were asked to be a druggie mule,

Howard Brown:

and you got busted. And you found yourself in prison, a lot

Howard Brown:

of found strength through discipline and exercise, and

Howard Brown:

reading. And she emerged not as a survivor but as a thriver.

Howard Brown:

After her release, she founded the foundation to aid

Howard Brown:

incarcerated women, became a certified mindset life coach,

Howard Brown:

and is now a fierce advocate for formerly incarcerated Central

Howard Brown:

American females. Alana is writing a tell all book, and her

Howard Brown:

mission is to impact millions of young lives as a motivational

Howard Brown:

speaker, as she blends her raw honesty, humour, and resilience

Howard Brown:

to overcome adversity. She's a full time mother to his son

Howard Brown:

justice, and we're going to talk about him. And you embody a

Howard Brown:

positive ending to this Panamanian journey, and you're

Howard Brown:

dedicated to uplifting others in transformation. And that's why

Howard Brown:

you're on the show, because I am overcoming an inspiration. Alana

Howard Brown:

Moor, tell us a little bit more what did I miss? Or, and tell us

Howard Brown:

something interesting that we don't know about you?

Alana Moor:

Oh, that's great. Thank you for that introduction,

Alana Moor:

that was lovely. Anything that you missed, I would say that I

Alana Moor:

think you hit the nail on the head. You know, there was a lot

Alana Moor:

of things that I did while I was in prison. And we can get into

Alana Moor:

that, obviously. So something that people something

Alana Moor:

interesting about me that a lot of people probably wouldn't

Alana Moor:

know, I am obsessed with Indian flute music. And I have this

Alana Moor:

sort of mantra in this meditation where I love to get

Alana Moor:

in the kitchen, and cook a really good meal. Obviously, I

Alana Moor:

have, you know, no limits on what I eat anymore. And listen

Alana Moor:

to Indian flute music and just be in an incredibly meditative

Alana Moor:

state.

Howard Brown:

I love that and allows you to actually what I

Howard Brown:

call in my book, find your happy place, because it's your stress

Howard Brown:

free zone. And you should go there often everyone needs to

Howard Brown:

find it, whether it's meditation, yoga, hiking,

Howard Brown:

biking, athletics, travel, music, I don't care, find your

Howard Brown:

happy place, go there as much as you can. Well, I want to dig

Howard Brown:

right in because you're young, and you made some mistakes. And

Howard Brown:

we all we are actually, in the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur war

Howard Brown:

coming up, and it's it's making atonement, it's repenting. You

Howard Brown:

made a mistake. And instead of actually just living with that,

Howard Brown:

and just killing yourself about it, you actually did something

Howard Brown:

about it, you use your time that you had to serve for this

Howard Brown:

mistake, for positive for helping other women. And now

Howard Brown:

continue to do so afterwards. So that's very honourable. We are

Howard Brown:

human. We make mistakes. Now, other people had something to do

Howard Brown:

with that, and that sucks. But I want you to share a little bit

Howard Brown:

about your time in prison. And some of the lessons that you

Howard Brown:

learned.

Alana Moor:

Yeah. I mean, to talk about my time in prison.

Alana Moor:

Let's start with the beginning. Very quickly, you know, I was

Alana Moor:

going I made a decision when I was 24 years old that I wanted

Alana Moor:

to go to school for fashion. And it was something that I believed

Alana Moor:

was going to be I was going to be the next big fashion

Alana Moor:

designer, made a decision, went to school. Graduated became a

Alana Moor:

stylist met an incredible person that allowed me to work for them

Alana Moor:

as a stylist and I was called into their office one day long

Alana Moor:

story short, this person and I had a great relationship. And

Alana Moor:

she called me into her office one day and said, I have a

Alana Moor:

really great opportunity for you, I really want to pay you

Alana Moor:

back for everything that you've done for me, I'm going to send

Alana Moor:

you to Panama on a vacation, and I have a friend there. You don't

Alana Moor:

have to worry about anything. I have lots of people that have

Alana Moor:

done this, you're gonna bring a bag back for me. And the thing

Alana Moor:

is, Howard is sometimes in life, when you want to get to the top,

Alana Moor:

and you see everybody around you getting there. You will do

Alana Moor:

anything that it takes to get there without thinking about any

Alana Moor:

consequences that may be at the end of your decisions. So I said

Alana Moor:

yes. And of course, I was like, Well, is it drugs? No, you don't

Alana Moor:

have to worry about anything. There was also somebody in the

Alana Moor:

room with her that day, who happens to be the right hand man

Alana Moor:

to one of the most famous musicians around so that helped.

Alana Moor:

It was a great sales pitch. And I fell for it. And I said, Yes,

Alana Moor:

fast forward. A week later, I show up to I go to Panama, I

Alana Moor:

spend a week there, I show up to the airport. And I think that I

Alana Moor:

start having this feeling that something is going wrong. And I

Alana Moor:

see I start thinking, I wonder if there's drugs in my bag. So

Alana Moor:

we get to the airport, I get off and I'm thinking this is it.

Alana Moor:

This is it. These drugs, our dogs are going to mull me and my

Alana Moor:

life is over. So I'm waiting in line to get on this plane and

Alana Moor:

one drug drug dog walks by, nothing happens. Another one

Alana Moor:

walks by nothing happens. Another one walks by nothing

Alana Moor:

happens. So I get this sort of second wind of confidence. I'm

Alana Moor:

waiting for the plane I get through security. They call my

Alana Moor:

name on the loudspeaker. They take me into the back and it's

Alana Moor:

utter chaos. And somebody is screaming at me. Where did you

Alana Moor:

get these bags? Where did you get these bags. Fast forward

Alana Moor:

five hours later, a prosecutor that I now know to be the

Alana Moor:

prosecutor comes in, goes through my bags and they find 11

Alana Moor:

kilos of cocaine in my suitcase, I'm transferred to what I now

Alana Moor:

know to be a men's prison where I am ankle shackled and risk

Alana Moor:

Chaco shackled for three days with no water, no food, and no

Alana Moor:

shower, no toilet paper, I'm transferred then to a female

Alana Moor:

prison where I'm sentenced to six months, because in Panama,

Alana Moor:

you are guilty until proven innocent. And that was my entire

Alana Moor:

life ripped from underneath me in the matter of three minutes

Alana Moor:

in an airport.

Howard Brown:

Let's stop for a second. Because I want that to

Howard Brown:

sink in for the listeners and anyone watching is that you

Howard Brown:

trusted someone, they were mentoring you. You had a big

Howard Brown:

superstar that asks you to do something. And you felt in your

Howard Brown:

gut that it was wrong, but you wanted to climb the ladder. You

Howard Brown:

also I know you brought a friend and that friend, just by chance

Howard Brown:

of being your friend suffered as well. And you knew there was

Howard Brown:

something in that bag. And you went forth anyways. Yeah. And

Howard Brown:

and now had to pay some extreme consequences because you're in a

Howard Brown:

foreign country of foreign land. And you're a drug mule. And

Howard Brown:

basically, you now have to suffer the consequences from

Howard Brown:

that mentor that was looking out for you. And all you did was

Howard Brown:

have a passion for fashion. And you wanted to you know, I made

Howard Brown:

that up. You just wanted to climb the ranks. So all right.

Howard Brown:

So you're a young woman, you're scared out of your mind. I can

Howard Brown:

imagine. You don't speak the language at that time. Correct?

Alana Moor:

I don't speak the language now. Correct. And so

Howard Brown:

in our previous talk, they made you sign a

Howard Brown:

document, you signed all your rights away. And they basically

Howard Brown:

were going to send in sentences sentence you to this woman's

Howard Brown:

prison, correct? Yeah. Right, pick us up from that shock and

Howard Brown:

awe, and what happens when you land there.

Alana Moor:

So I remember being in the back of a truck. And it's

Alana Moor:

this long dirt road to get to the prison. And the funny

Alana Moor:

juxtaposition is right across the street, there's a

Alana Moor:

university. And I remember driving down that thinking,

Alana Moor:

Okay, I'm about to become somebody's bitch. I'm about to

Alana Moor:

get the shit kicked out of me. And I'm about to have to learn

Alana Moor:

how to defend myself very quickly. I'm gonna have to

Alana Moor:

figure this out. And this is the interesting part of the story

Alana Moor:

that I always sort of still laugh to myself about. I

Alana Moor:

remember pulling up and getting off of the back of this truck.

Alana Moor:

And looking and there were all these women outside, in pink T

Alana Moor:

shirts and jeans, with giant rollers in their hair. There was

Alana Moor:

Spanish music playing in the background, and a bunch of girls

Alana Moor:

are getting their hair blow dried. And I thought, Where the

Alana Moor:

heck did I just show up. And I was so afraid that this moment

Alana Moor:

almost allowed me to sort of feel a little bit at ease. Like,

Alana Moor:

I was still very afraid. But I was like, Oh, okay. And I

Alana Moor:

remember a girl yelling at me and my friend, I love you for

Alana Moor:

their word, screaming at me. And there were all these other women

Alana Moor:

up against the fence on the other side of where I where I

Alana Moor:

was like these other women were staring at me up against the

Alana Moor:

fence, you know, little short shorts, hair and rollers, little

Alana Moor:

crop tops, my friend, I love you, whatever. And I remember,

Alana Moor:

the guards went through all of our stuff. And they handcuffed

Alana Moor:

us and they brought us in to the prison. And we had to walk by

Alana Moor:

all of these girls, and they were all hooting and hollering

Alana Moor:

at us.

Howard Brown:

This is the welcome waggon This is the

Howard Brown:

welcome waggon

Alana Moor:

This is the it's the fresh meat. It's the fresh beat

Alana Moor:

waggon. So basically what happens when anybody new walks

Alana Moor:

into a prison, they scream about it. Everybody knows fresh meat,

Alana Moor:

fresh meat, you know. And so I don't know this at the time, I

Alana Moor:

hear gibberish. And I was in shock. I mean, how do you go

Alana Moor:

from a life that you know, in North America to walking into a

Alana Moor:

Panamanian prison in the middle of the desert, with some of

Alana Moor:

Panama's most dangerous criminals that are just walking

Alana Moor:

around everywhere, not speaking the language, not having any

Alana Moor:

clue when you're leaving, and having to then decide which

Alana Moor:

route you're going to take for survival. So I've always said,

Alana Moor:

and I will always say, the second that I walked in, I knew

Alana Moor:

I had two choices. I was to be constructive with my time, or

Alana Moor:

destructive. Now, living in the middle of hell, destructive

Alana Moor:

seems like the best option, because negativity when you're

Alana Moor:

living in hell is so rampant. But I decided that both took

Alana Moor:

energy. And both I would have to focus and figure out how to do

Alana Moor:

either one. And I chose to be constructive. And from day three

Alana Moor:

of being there, I had to go through the initial trauma

Alana Moor:

shock, overwhelming feeling of where the fuck did I just end

Alana Moor:

up? And I made a decision very quickly and very early on, that

Alana Moor:

I was going to be constructive with my time. So I had a

Alana Moor:

decision to make. The question was how I also learned very

Alana Moor:

quickly that this is not like a prison in North America, where

Alana Moor:

you are given everything that you wear, everything you wash

Alana Moor:

with, you are given your feminine hygiene products, you

Alana Moor:

are given a schedule, there's no schedule, whatever you walk in

Alana Moor:

with is what you have, if you don't have it too bad, you

Alana Moor:

better figure it out. So I not only had to figure out a way to

Alana Moor:

survive financially in terms of having clothes to put on my back

Alana Moor:

and having soap to clean my body and having feminine and feminine

Alana Moor:

hygiene products to deal with what happens to women every

Alana Moor:

single month. I also had to decide how was I going to use my

Alana Moor:

time wisely. Because regardless of what my decision was the time

Alana Moor:

was going to pass. So was this going to be a waste of time, or

Alana Moor:

time that passed by that I used wisely and became a better

Alana Moor:

version of myself. Now there were definitely a few turning

Alana Moor:

points during my time that made that that sort of, you know, put

Alana Moor:

that into perspective of like, okay, this is the moment where

Alana Moor:

change has to happen.

Howard Brown:

Now, you had a roommate, which was your friend,

Howard Brown:

and you there's a lot of isolation time. Also, you're the

Howard Brown:

newbie, and then you're learning and eventually you don't become

Howard Brown:

the newbie, but right you there's an internal black market

Howard Brown:

there in order to acquire things, and you need to do

Howard Brown:

favours for other things. So, I mean, we see a lot of stuff on

Howard Brown:

TV, and I'm sure a fraction of it isn't even accurate. But, you

Howard Brown:

know, you had to live this, you know, in a foreign country. And

Howard Brown:

and then I think you actually had to call home, right? And

Howard Brown:

say, I effed up. I'm going to be here for a while. Yeah. And so

Howard Brown:

I'm sure there was some nasty stuff that happened, but you

Howard Brown:

decided to learn the language, right? You learned so you could

Howard Brown:

actually be able to speak and communicate. I think that's a

Howard Brown:

survival thing. But you also became a whatever reading they

Howard Brown:

had you became a voracious reader to expand your mind as

Howard Brown:

well. But also tell me about some of the relationships You

Howard Brown:

decided to actually be known to be someone that could help

Howard Brown:

others, and put that reputation out there in a prison of all

Howard Brown:

sorts. Tell me about that.

Alana Moor:

Yeah, that's, that's great. So, day three, I remember

Alana Moor:

I go in to see the director of this prison. And I had been

Alana Moor:

doing a lot of writing and a lot of thinking, obviously, there's

Alana Moor:

a lot of time to think. And she goes, What do you want, like,

Alana Moor:

what could make your stay here a little bit better. I said, not

Alana Moor:

being here, A, but if we have to, if I have to be here, I

Alana Moor:

really want to, I really want to be able to work out. I know, you

Alana Moor:

know, I come from an athletic background, I was a soccer

Alana Moor:

player growing up, I was an avid competitive dancer my whole

Alana Moor:

life. So I also have always been into fitness. So I knew that my

Alana Moor:

mental health and my faith in God was going to be shown

Alana Moor:

through my ability to stay active, and to, you know, help

Alana Moor:

my mental health through physical fitness. Okay. So we

Alana Moor:

made a decision that day that I was going to start teaching

Alana Moor:

fitness. So day three of my prison stay in 2015, in a place

Alana Moor:

where I could not speak more than two words, and those two

Alana Moor:

words being Hola, and Cervesa, which I now know to be beer.

Alana Moor:

Those are the only two words I knew, I was thrown into a

Alana Moor:

position of leadership, where I got to teach fitness at 7am,

Alana Moor:

every single day. And I want to talk a little bit about how that

Alana Moor:

went for me. So I remember walking in the first day, and

Alana Moor:

they went in and they did this announcement like, Hey, we're

Alana Moor:

gonna start to have fitness classes. And this is the other

Alana Moor:

thing, Howard, the prison system in Panama is very behind, in

Alana Moor:

accessibility to courses to studying to, you know, allowing

Alana Moor:

people to expand their mind in any sort of a way. So there's a

Alana Moor:

lot of boredom. And what happens when people get bored. They act

Alana Moor:

out what happens when people get bored, they hurt themselves.

Alana Moor:

What happens when people get bored, they hurt others. So it

Alana Moor:

was kind of like this social experiment where a I became a

Alana Moor:

leader. So in a position of leadership in a prison, you are

Alana Moor:

less likely to be in a position of of being hurt by anybody

Alana Moor:

there. So all of a sudden, I look like somebody that can

Alana Moor:

defend themselves. So I start teaching fitness at 7am Every

Alana Moor:

single day, the first day, I think 10 people showed up, we

Alana Moor:

got to listen to music. And I was basically just going, huh,

Alana Moor:

and, and I Oh, no dose and tres and I had no idea how to speak

Alana Moor:

the language and people are laughing at me hysterically, you

Alana Moor:

know, and I'm talking, the girl that killed her husband, and

Alana Moor:

then hit him in her freezer is out there side by side with me

Alana Moor:

laughing at me because I have no idea how to say up or down in

Alana Moor:

Spanish. Here's the cool thing that happened. And I love this

Alana Moor:

story. We started to see girls create consistency in their

Alana Moor:

life, because they started to come out every single day,

Alana Moor:

Monday through Friday, for one hour in the morning to work out

Alana Moor:

with me. You know, I this isn't a gym. This is a cement floor

Alana Moor:

with you know, barbed wire all around you. And I was given some

Alana Moor:

chairs. And I had to figure it out how to use the body, how to

Alana Moor:

make people work together. That was the other thing. People

Alana Moor:

started to work together. People started to become calmer. There

Alana Moor:

was, you know, less violence with the certain 1015 women that

Alana Moor:

would come out consistently to see me. And I was able to teach

Alana Moor:

them about slowly I started to learn the language. So I started

Alana Moor:

to focus and that sort of ties in with it right, I got the

Alana Moor:

dictionary, I started to listen, I started to really force myself

Alana Moor:

to understand the basics of fitness in Spanish and be able

Alana Moor:

to teach it. So you start to see these girls create habits in

Alana Moor:

their life have consistency in their life. And I start to put

Alana Moor:

myself in a position of leadership. So I am basically

Alana Moor:

it's a it's a it's a Get Out of Jail like safe card. Right? I

Alana Moor:

remember this girl named Chola. Seven bullets in her body. One

Alana Moor:

of the toughest criminals in Panama. She got transferred to

Alana Moor:

our prison. And I remember her telling the entire jail the only

Alana Moor:

person that I will not fight in this jail and I mean fight she

Alana Moor:

has a double switchblade and she will cut anybody that comes

Alana Moor:

within a five foot radius of her. She was a very scary human,

Alana Moor:

but very loving at the core. She said the only person I will not

Alana Moor:

fight in this prison is Alanna. She is strong and she could kill

Alana Moor:

anybody. So fitness became my defence mechanism and it It also

Alana Moor:

became my power. And I, I was as strong as I'd ever been.

Howard Brown:

But at the meantime, you're running, you

Howard Brown:

know, aerobics on a cement floor with no gym pads, and people are

Howard Brown:

coming out and starting to come out. And you're teaching them

Howard Brown:

how to stretch, and you're starting their day with a

Howard Brown:

purpose. And they're actually doing some physical fitness. And

Howard Brown:

I'm sure they told others and the class grew. And that's a

Howard Brown:

beautiful story, because you're trying to survive. I mean, it's

Howard Brown:

no fun there, and you have a lot of downtime. And a lot of bad

Howard Brown:

stuff goes into that, because there's a chain of command and

Howard Brown:

you fortunately navigated and took the right path that way as

Howard Brown:

well. So take me through a few more things that prison that are

Howard Brown:

that stand out, that you want to share?

Alana Moor:

Yeah, definitely. So I would say that for me, I

Alana Moor:

noticed very quickly, there's a few things that stand out for me

Alana Moor:

that I that I love. This is something that sticks out a lot.

Alana Moor:

Not every day in prison is bad. You know, you you definitely get

Alana Moor:

to create a good time for yourself if you want to. So I

Alana Moor:

really, there's this whole moment of time in prison. That

Alana Moor:

was the shift for me. Okay, so I was teaching fitness. But I also

Alana Moor:

within that year and a half found out that I was sentenced

Alana Moor:

to 81 months in prison where I had been lied to by a lawyer and

Alana Moor:

told that I was going home. So I was dealing with that stress and

Alana Moor:

the stress of not knowing. So I started to read a lot. I mean,

Alana Moor:

my own mother brought me an entire suitcase, not with

Alana Moor:

anything in it. But books. I started to read books, I started

Alana Moor:

to read about business, I started to write business plans

Alana Moor:

for different ideas that I had, because I knew I needed to keep

Alana Moor:

my brain sharp. The time was going to pass, they wouldn't let

Alana Moor:

me complete my degree. I wanted to complete my degree and do my

Alana Moor:

masters. They said no, the government of Panama refused my

Alana Moor:

education. So I did grade Kindergarten to Grade 12. So

Alana Moor:

during this time, I begin to adopt, you know, I sound like

Alana Moor:

everything's going good, but I have a bit of a bad attitude.

Alana Moor:

Because when you're surrounded by people that are bullying you

Alana Moor:

all the time. And when you're surrounded by guards that a lot

Alana Moor:

of these people have never even seen a white person like me.

Alana Moor:

That's the reality. So they think that I come from

Alana Moor:

privilege, they treat me differently. I was bullied by

Alana Moor:

guards, I was bullied by different people within the

Alana Moor:

prison. I had to protect myself. And then you're also dealing

Alana Moor:

with its high school. You know, you have women that are, you

Alana Moor:

know, setting things on fire and slitting their wrists and

Alana Moor:

fighting each other in front of you. And you have to think it's

Alana Moor:

normal. You're in a cell that's full of bunk beds, 72 bunk beds

Alana Moor:

with one toilet, no shower, everybody has to do the same

Alana Moor:

thing. And they're infested with cockroaches, you have an

Alana Moor:

industrial fan, 24 hours a day going, you have 72 radios in one

Alana Moor:

cell. And no one ever is quiet. There was never any quiet.

Alana Moor:

Imagine four and a half years of noise. So I was it was getting

Alana Moor:

to me. And I was starting to get a bit of an attitude. So I

Alana Moor:

remember this one guard had it against me, this is a very cool

Alana Moor:

story. I had a cell phone at one point in prison because the only

Alana Moor:

way to communicate with people was through having a cell phone,

Alana Moor:

you can only imagine where women would hide the cell phone to be

Alana Moor:

able to not have it there. I did not do that. So I got my cell

Alana Moor:

phone taken away very quickly. She was against me. She had nine

Alana Moor:

guards come into the cell at 930 at night one night to take my

Alana Moor:

phone for me. Okay. The next day she shows up to the jail. She

Alana Moor:

laughs in my face and calls me a fucking dumb gringa. And I snap

Alana Moor:

and I see red. And I begin to follow her and my thought is I'm

Alana Moor:

going to kill her. And this is nothing. She's so mean to me.

Alana Moor:

And I remember two girls put their arms in front of me and I

Alana Moor:

was like, No, I've had enough. Okay, I tried to fight this

Alana Moor:

guard. I ended up getting in trouble for it. That was the

Alana Moor:

moment I remember going into the back after it happened. I got in

Alana Moor:

a lot of trouble. I got six months probation. And I was

Alana Moor:

bawling my eyes out and I'm like, What am I doing here? How

Alana Moor:

am I going to survive? And this girl was like, You got to get

Alana Moor:

your shit together. You got to find things that you love to do.

Alana Moor:

You got to do it. I was like, Okay. And I remember walking two

Alana Moor:

things happen. I saw this note on the wall that said public

Alana Moor:

speaking competition. So what they were doing was a national

Alana Moor:

wide public speaking competition. And basically you

Alana Moor:

did it at the prison. You wrote a speech. You did it there. If

Alana Moor:

you won, you got to go to this beautiful theatre in the middle

Alana Moor:

of Panama City with no handcuffs, and you were put on

Alana Moor:

national television and radio to compete and you could win and I

Alana Moor:

win I remember I used to pray on my knees every night and I got

Alana Moor:

this overwhelming feeling of you need to do it. And I woke up the

Alana Moor:

next day and I went into the office and I said, Can I do this

Alana Moor:

even though I don't speak Spanish, and they were like,

Alana Moor:

yep. And I spent the next month and a half, learning the

Alana Moor:

language perfectly writing a speech in English, translating

Alana Moor:

it into Spanish. Now, if you think about this, I had a lot of

Alana Moor:

time on my hands. So this was great. I did that. I competed, I

Alana Moor:

won. In prison. I went to this theatre in Panama City. And I

Alana Moor:

had my father fly down. And he saw me with no handcuffs compete

Alana Moor:

on television. That was a shifting moment for me. And just

Alana Moor:

the last thing that I'll say to this is that guard I, we had

Alana Moor:

problems for month months. And I remember one day, we had this

Alana Moor:

kid's day. And they wanted us to, they wanted somebody to

Alana Moor:

dress up as a clown. And nobody wanted to do it. And I was like,

Alana Moor:

I'll do it. I dressed up as a clown. And I went out. And I and

Alana Moor:

I, we had a day with the kids, the kids could come and we did

Alana Moor:

games for them and things like that. And I remember I had this

Alana Moor:

voice in my head that said, today's the day you're going to

Alana Moor:

apologise to Flores to this guard. And I was like, No, I'm

Alana Moor:

not. And my head was like, Yes, you are. And I walked into her

Alana Moor:

office that day, three months after this thing had happened. I

Alana Moor:

sat down on the floor in a clown costume. And I apologised for

Alana Moor:

what I had done. And six months later, she died of breast

Alana Moor:

cancer. And that was a huge pivotal moment for me. And from

Alana Moor:

that moment, I invested all my time and shifting my mindset. I

Alana Moor:

designed clothes, I worked out twice a day I did every course

Alana Moor:

that came to prison, I went to school, I went to church. And I

Alana Moor:

made sure that during this time that I without the resources

Alana Moor:

created my own resources to become the best possible version

Alana Moor:

of myself that I could. Because mindset, it's all about your

Alana Moor:

mind. You choose your attitude. And you know, the book, we

Alana Moor:

talked about it, you know, Viktor Frankl, yeah, A Man's

Alana Moor:

Search for Meaning three years in a concentration camp.

Alana Moor:

Everything can be taken from a man but one thing, the last of

Alana Moor:

human freedoms, right to choose one's attitude, in any given set

Alana Moor:

of circumstances, to choose one's own way, that book changed

Alana Moor:

my life. And I realised that I could find freedom in the middle

Alana Moor:

of Hell, if I wanted to. You make the choice. And that's what

Alana Moor:

I did. And the hardest part of being in prison, as Viktor

Alana Moor:

Frankl talks about in his book, The hardest part of being in a

Alana Moor:

concentration camp is not living in El, it's not knowing when

Alana Moor:

you're getting out. Because how do you create goals when you

Alana Moor:

don't have a tangible ending? Now, could I physically create

Alana Moor:

change in my life when I didn't know when I was leaving? That

Alana Moor:

was the hardest part.

Howard Brown:

I want to say that shuddering a little bit, because

Howard Brown:

you actually had the ability to shine some light, in the darkest

Howard Brown:

of moments in complete darkness, the speaking competition, you

Howard Brown:

know that you pursued it to be the clown that no one wanted to

Howard Brown:

be, you raise your hand and said, Pick Me. And so you're

Howard Brown:

able to do that just this human resolve that you're showing is

Howard Brown:

so important. And as I always say that we don't compare, I had

Howard Brown:

my own prison, I've been a sage for cancer. There's nothing

Howard Brown:

there's nothing to compare. But it's darkness. We all suffered

Howard Brown:

darkness. And we did not, or could not, or chose not to find

Howard Brown:

the light to be able to get out of that. And you tried to and

Howard Brown:

did. And I tried to and did. And this is why we're on this show

Howard Brown:

together today to lift other people up from their darkness.

Howard Brown:

And this is going to become a book and I'm sure a motion

Howard Brown:

picture. So tell us about what's what's going on with your book.

Alana Moor:

Oh, gosh, you know, I will say I will talk about my

Alana Moor:

book in one second. And I just want to say to what you just

Alana Moor:

said, when people come to me, and they say I could never go

Alana Moor:

through what you went through, you said it yourself. Just now.

Alana Moor:

You know, your story must be worse. It's never about the

Alana Moor:

story. It's about the feelings. We all go through difficult

Alana Moor:

situations in our lives. I could never think about what you've

Alana Moor:

gone through. I don't think I could get through it. And if you

Alana Moor:

looked at me, you would say yes, you could. Because in in the

Alana Moor:

face of adversity, we are given the skills that we need to

Alana Moor:

change. It's just whether or not we're willing to work hard

Alana Moor:

because it's not fucking easy. So my book starts like this. I

Alana Moor:

have over 12 journals that I began to write because I knew I

Alana Moor:

always wondered what my purpose was. And I had these pivotal

Alana Moor:

moments. And that speaking competition was the huge pivotal

Alana Moor:

moment where I thought if I could change one person's life,

Alana Moor:

or One person's decision to choose themselves, and to do the

Alana Moor:

work to get where they wanted to go. So they don't have to make

Alana Moor:

the decision that I made. Or if I can teach people about mental

Alana Moor:

toughness, and about how to get through situations because you

Alana Moor:

can, I don't want the excuses, literally, I've realised that

Alana Moor:

going to prison is probably one of the five most difficult

Alana Moor:

situations you could go through in your life. And I thought, I

Alana Moor:

just knew, I just knew, it just came to me that I needed to

Alana Moor:

share my experience and my story. And here's the thing, I

Alana Moor:

remember someone saying to me in prison, prison is a different

Alana Moor:

world. And I became numb to a lot of the stories in the

Alana Moor:

situations that I went through, because we could sit here for

Alana Moor:

five hours, five days and talk about hilarious stories of

Alana Moor:

people infiltrating drugs, and people throwing alcohol over the

Alana Moor:

fence and girls running to pick it up and how the system works,

Alana Moor:

right? There are rules behind bars, there's no rules, and I

Alana Moor:

want to be able to share my experience, the good, the bad,

Alana Moor:

the ugly, there were good days, there were bad days, there were

Alana Moor:

funny, funny moments. There was amazing learning experiences. I

Alana Moor:

don't wish this on anybody, but I would never change it for the

Alana Moor:

world. And so I feel like, why do we come to this earth, to go

Alana Moor:

through an experience to help somebody else? So I've started

Alana Moor:

my book, I haven't finished it. But it's basically talking more

Alana Moor:

about, you know, I want it to be really raw. So I really want to

Alana Moor:

share the real things I was writing about, right? Here's a

Alana Moor:

raw look at how it was, here's what I've learned from it. And

Alana Moor:

here's what I wish for you. You know, I did a lot of things in

Alana Moor:

prison every single day that I forced myself to, like, let's

Alana Moor:

say our gratitude list, right? Or, or, or planning out my

Alana Moor:

future and how that looked. So I want to be able to help people

Alana Moor:

to do that for themselves. And look at the big picture, but

Alana Moor:

then also look at, you know, who isn't what it's like, what I

Alana Moor:

went through so that they don't have to go through it?

Howard Brown:

Well, you can tell your story. And it's there was

Howard Brown:

horrible times to don't don't care. It was not a bunch of

Howard Brown:

roses by any stretch. I'm sure there was a lot that you even

Howard Brown:

talked about, you know, a switchblade and, and nasty stuff

Howard Brown:

happening as well. But I want to wrap things up a little bit. But

Howard Brown:

I want you to talk about to the word justice. I want you to talk

Howard Brown:

about justice, the meaning and justice your son, please. Yeah,

Alana Moor:

thank you. You know, I that's, that's where do I even

Alana Moor:

start? So justice, my son, I fought for my freedom for a long

Alana Moor:

time. When I got out of prison, I ended up as you know, going

Alana Moor:

and spending time with a woman whose name is Sonny justice. And

Alana Moor:

she basically created Burt's Bees into the brand that you see

Alana Moor:

now has taught me so much about self love about running

Alana Moor:

businesses about managing businesses, and did that with

Alana Moor:

her came home was deported from Panama, defeated, heartbroken

Alana Moor:

because I had while I was in prison, I met my partner, I met

Alana Moor:

the love of my life. That's a crazy story. And I had to leave

Alana Moor:

him I had no choice. And I remember I got home. And two

Alana Moor:

weeks later, I found out I was pregnant. And I didn't know when

Alana Moor:

I would see my partner again. And how do you walk away from

Alana Moor:

somebody that you love, but also somebody that supported you in

Alana Moor:

the darkest moment when they didn't have to, had no

Alana Moor:

obligation to come and see a person in prison, when you could

Alana Moor:

be seeing a woman that's out in public doing good things with

Alana Moor:

her life. And you chose to be there for me. And, you know,

Alana Moor:

through that, also, like, you know, as I started my little

Alana Moor:

foundation and all of that, like I wanted to pick a name because

Alana Moor:

this was like a full circle moment. Panama took my life

Alana Moor:

away. And then Panama went ahead and gave me life. And I raising

Alana Moor:

a son is not easy when you're starting your life from scratch.

Alana Moor:

raising a son is not easy when you're doing it as a single

Alana Moor:

mother. Raising your son is not easy when you're doing it. With

Alana Moor:

all with everything going for you. It's not easy, but there is

Alana Moor:

justice behind what I went through. And like I just said,

Alana Moor:

justice is that full circle moment for me. And my son is

Alana Moor:

just the most beautiful Latino man you've ever seen. My laptop?

Howard Brown:

Yeah, of course you are. Right And it's

Howard Brown:

beautiful. You also finally had some trusted caregiver mentors

Howard Brown:

that that really cared for you, your partner he's dedicated to

Howard Brown:

you. And then sunny justice taught you that there is a

Howard Brown:

brighter tomorrow. This testimony is so powerful. I want

Howard Brown:

to actually just wrap up the show we're gonna do our shining

Howard Brown:

brightly moment. So let's shot together, put on your

Howard Brown:

sunglasses.

Alana Moor:

The great thing about these is these are

Alana Moor:

actually from panama,

Howard Brown:

panama Jack are real Panama's sunglasses while

Howard Brown:

we are shining brightly here, because your your testimony is

Howard Brown:

so powerful. Your perseverance, your resolve your resiliency,

Howard Brown:

and to start and give justice a good life. Give yourself a good

Howard Brown:

life. And may you be reconnected with your partner soon. Please

Howard Brown:

tell people how they can everyone's gonna want to get in

Howard Brown:

touch with you. So how's the best I'll get there. Get in

Howard Brown:

touch with you.

Alana Moor:

Thank you, you're so sweet. So I would say my

Alana Moor:

Instagram is at Alana Moor speaks more being spelled mooR.

Alana Moor:

My name is spelled A h l a n a. And then I have a little website

Alana Moor:

WWW.AlanaMoor.my.Canva.site. Those are probably the best ways

Alana Moor:

to get in touch with me send me a DM. Yeah, and I'm

Howard Brown:

going to include everything in the show notes and

Howard Brown:

in the comments on social and everything like that people are

Howard Brown:

going to want to reach out to you because you're also although

Howard Brown:

you're working on the book, you are a speaker. And you also

Howard Brown:

actually are a mindset coach, and you have a giveaway. So tell

Howard Brown:

people that you're going to give away some discount off your some

Howard Brown:

of your coaching.

Alana Moor:

Ah, this is awesome. So yes, I am a mindset coach, I

Alana Moor:

am going to offer if you send me a DM saying shining brightly,

Alana Moor:

obviously thank you to Howard. I'm giving 50% off your first

Alana Moor:

four sessions with me for mindset coaching, we'll do a

Alana Moor:

discovery call and we'll get into your four sessions. And

Alana Moor:

it's I'm just so looking forward to work with working with people

Alana Moor:

to help them to really shift their mindset and shift their

Alana Moor:

life. And also on my website, you can get in touch with me for

Alana Moor:

speaking engagements, you can donate to my foundation, which

Alana Moor:

actually helps bring dignity packages to women in prison in

Alana Moor:

Panama. I'm working to make that bigger and better every single

Alana Moor:

day. So I would love to collab and chat with anybody about that

Alana Moor:

as well.

Howard Brown:

It's beautiful. And so this has been one

Howard Brown:

powerful show, and I you are a light and you're taking a awful

Howard Brown:

situation and making it better. I'm sure you can coach lots of

Howard Brown:

men and women that that need that type of help as well. And I

Howard Brown:

do the same. And we're that's why we're so aligned. And so you

Howard Brown:

can reach me at shining brightly.com You can find out

Howard Brown:

about speaking and my my book, of course and the podcasts and

Howard Brown:

my advocacy work, and I help and mentor entrepreneurs young ones

Howard Brown:

at Babson College and cancer patients, and I work in the

Howard Brown:

interface space. So come interact with me as well. I have

Howard Brown:

downloads for mentorship, survivorship and interfaith

Howard Brown:

relations. So this has been another great show. We will

Howard Brown:

close it out by saying let's all shine brightly a little bit each

Howard Brown:

day for ourselves, for others and our communities. And yes,

Howard Brown:

the world will be a better place. Amen.

Alana Moor:

Thank you so much, Howard. Thank you for having me.

Howard Brown:

My pleasure.

Links