now that i have a place i managed to get my laptop back, i covet the old machine more than i thought and missed it when i was in the emergency shelter. i have a Great house manager who wanted me to do a project, i hope i will be able to do in the future. i am no longer on medication that turns me into a daze for 8 hours everyday. i don’t miss
the mats, rules and constant fighting @ the shelter. i also realized how many women choose to be homeless, making it a profession. the chronic homeless. i made some good friendships that i no longer have. i found that my usually bouncing, extroverted demeanor changed. i became quiet. if someone asked me a question i viewed as too personal i would immediatly change topic, or stop talking.
i Believe in Now.
the morning everything changed, i had had a petty fight with another woman over something that was inconsequential. i was told by beauiful and very mentally ill 19 year old that i was meaningless. she screamed @ me down the street: Do Something With Your Life. that night curfew was at 10:30pm-that was when where expected to go to sleep; they turned the lights on 5:50am the first time i was there i remember shaking, from stress.
morning where endless waiting in line. give our names before the door opened. i was at the Salvation Army on a bed for a week. i realized how little they provided for women, how wasteful the place was; plastic gloves& mountains of Styrofoam. where i am now we have recycling bins, i have a bed with key to my door.
i realized one morning how many women in the line i was in had done what i only ended up doing for 6 weeks, they had done for years. it was Normal to nothing but camper style mat for the rest of their lives with one blanket. i can remember waking up thinking i was in
my bed until my feet touched the floor. something that would wake me instantly. my bed is in pieces in my storage unit. a place i would dread going to but now realize how lucky i am to have it. the line would form and there was always someone who wanted the doors to open when they expected it to be opened.
there was a woman that never was allowed to get a mat-i don’t know why? she had everything in garbage bags she would haul into the common room, where she would start collecting more paper, a ritual she did everyday, that she was allowed to come in. there was Fights, theft, arguments that would fill the common room. i remember the first day i managed to sleep through the chaos at 7am with 4.5 hours of sleep from the night before.
i had a safety, a place to go during the day. my friends house where i could shower, walk his dog and nap in silence, so quiet i remember crying myself to sleep one afternoon because i felt safe. i don’t miss the stress of having to wonder where my head would end up on what church floor, when they would tell us time to get up. how they had us herded like cows in front hallway. of wondering what will happen everyday. now, i enjoy cooking again, have begun making my omellets, i enjoy eating, knowing that i have bed, a key & Hope as one.