i have come to the realization lately that there are things i need to do on my own, namely get myself out homelessness. i have offers from people that are saying that they will give a place to stay if nothing turns out, but i realized that i am the Only One that can get myself housing. i was also told this past week that i am inspiring people that i have in my life & that have told me that i have made a difference. making a difference in the current situation i am in really touched me. i have begun the daunting task of looking for housing & it’s an uphill battle, but i am also determined. i was approached about doing a documentary about my current situation & was touched when i was told it’d only be me & one other woman in the house doing the documentary. of course we don’t even have the film for the project yet-just ideas.
i submitted my poetry to the Believer, a magazine i don’t Believe in-as i submitted my poetry highlighting deliberately that i wrote about being a homeless woman. the response i received was curt & on the side of nasty. i look @ how the government is sinking millions into a going Nowhere war while there are homeless families on the street in every major city & we are too Busy looking down @ the credit card bill & debt to see the people in the shadows. last summer i only had my backpack on my back for 3 months, it was one of the hardest summers of my life& i debated suicide for almost a month, till i got my strength back, which in return helped me get into transitional housing.
what i gained from seeing women high on crack/meth/pot & turning tricks made me realize that i didn’t want to turn into one of them. no matter how hard things got. i can remember seeing a woman i knew drunk everynight as it was the only way she could get to sleep. i stayed on the quiet side of the room when we had roll call& if someone asked me a personal question i won’t talk about my life. i began freezing things out that i wouldn’t talk about. after i came into the transitional housing program i began to thaw out. although i was forced to change my medication while i was still in the street shelter. i very hard, tumultuous weekend @ boyfriends house& starting what i am currently taking right after i began to feel better.
i am No longer a shadow although i sometimes feel that if people Actually knew who i am behind my computer screen they would be shocked. when i tell people i meet that i am in transitional housing & not living in some swank apartment i usually get odd questions. when i mention that i hold a college degree that i grew up in a middle class household with both my parents in the house, they start to see. just slightly-that i am not some white trash homeless drug addict. as that is the common perception. i don’t have a Character Flaw-i was evicted after being discriminated against by rich, unscrupulous white man who entered my apartment illegally more than the one he admitted in the court of law. my former apartment is a place in my heart that i sometimes i ache for, although not the crazy guy that lived next door to me, or the broken window in my living room that kept me cold all winter, the opium addict that lived adjacent to me, or the acid making guys in the basement of the building. i don’t miss that. i didn’t live when i was there. i triggered my mental illness& became a place i feared to come back to.
so, No i don’t want to move back to my old apartment-i would rather find a new place where i feel safe when i come home everyday. where i can spread out my stuff, do laundry when i feel like it, watch CSI 3 days a week & cook my legendary butternut squash soup, without having to share it with 30 other women. i want to find a place where my soul is @ ease when i come back. where i can unwrap my brain & become the famous writer i have been told i am supposed to become. i know i will find it, because i won’t Give Up on myself-no matter what the obstacles are in my Future. i will find home.