PerBlog October 19, 2013
After spending the majority of this year out of work and the most recent 2-3 months couch-surfing after I lost my apartment, I am finally starting to get settled in at my new home. It is 2 ½ hours from where I have been for the past decade, but St. Lucie County had just completely run out of opportunities for me. After my old boss passed away and the company closed behind him in January, I simply could not find work that was enough to take care of my basic needs. I’d found temp work here and there, but nothing permanent came through. With my apartment several months behind, that was it. I started another temp job and put my stuff into storage, staying between my car and a neighbor’s house (which quickly became very abusive situation). I approached people that I trusted and no one was willing to let me stay with them until I got back on my feet so without an ounce of help from my friends and no family in the area, I had a choice to make: continue being homeless and unable to care for myself much less my daughter, or make a change in my life.
It’s been a very difficult change to make. 150 miles away, a previous boyfriend was willing to take me in and provide food and shelter while I sought work and recovered my losses. His family (3 kids of his own plus two extended family) has been welcoming and friendly as I try to find work here in a much bigger city and try to adjust, settle in and find my way around. I am still looking for work, but do have some calls coming back for interviews and I am hopeful something will come through soon. I have so much I need to catch up on – vital bills that can NOT be ignored but right now there isn’t a damn thing I can do about them. I’m still trying to come to terms with the fact that I am 2 ½ hours away from my daughter until I find work and get a couple paychecks in to be able to get back for visitation, the fact that my belongings are being auctioned off at storage because I couldn’t pay for it, and the fact that I lost two pets in the process, Topper and Moppit, my cat and my dog. I have very little clothing with me, and only one of my journals – the most recent one – even though I had kept every one of my journals since I started writing them at age 9. I had to leave when I had to leave, and that meant coming up with only what would fit in my car. This is the third time in my life I’ve lost it all. Isn’t it about damn time something other than being shit on becomes permanent in my life?
Well, with nothing to my name, here I am starting over yet again. Praying to God something permanent comes in so I can once again have gas and food (it’s still scarce here in a household of seven), proper clothing, personal bills paid, and a little to live on. After those basics are taken care of, I look forward to being able to fix the A/C in this house, as it’s got a bad circuit board and was 92F inside today and my asthma is suffering BADLY for being stuck in this hot, humid air and I’ve no means to get my medication. Internet would be great too! Right now my only reliable connection is at the library. It’s sad, the things we take for granted when we have them constantly. When not having certain things begins to affect one’s health however, I think there is justification for bitching a bit when trying to change the situation that wasn’t working isn’t itself immediately working. My life has turned upside-down this year and fallen out from under me. It is HARD. Bear with me if I’m angry or depressed or bitter. All that pretty hope and happiness idealism isn’t always possible.
This past Tuesday, someone very close to me sent me the following text:
“No idea what’s going on but Clackamas Town Center is literally surrounded by police w/medical and fire on hand en masse.” 4:02 PM PST Dec 11
He was right there, trying to get through the chaos, texting me as it happened:
“Units still arriving, all agencies, well over 100.” 4:03 PM PST Dec 11
I’m pacing at this point, wondering what the hell is happening. He’s in Oregon City, I’m 3500 miles away in Florida and helpless to do anything to follow my first instinct to get him out of there (not that he’d have needed my help, that’s just the way I am). Dreading what I’d see, I turned on the news…
This was hitting way too close to home as someone I love was THERE.
Then Friday… Newtown, CT… I could not believe what I was hearing as I was listening to the reports coming in on NPR. As the count rose of all the children senselessly taken from this quiet community at a place where they are supposed to be safe, all I could think of was my daughter. She was at school here and at that moment all I wanted to do was hold her, protect her, from anything and everything. But that’s impossible.
We are coming into a time where people are becoming so desperate that they are more and more often resorting to more violent means of crying out for help, for getting their points across. Only two emotions can remain after such attacks in our own communities: Anger and Fear. The anger will only progress into rage and more calculated killings. The fear can only drive innocent people away from public places, into their homes afraid to go out in public anymore. No place is immune from someone snapping and opening fire. Temples, churches, schools, malls… I think if we really come together as communities and pay attention to what is happening around us, pay attention to the signs that others are giving, we may be able to prevent some future attacks from occurring. If we can catch warning signs earlier that someone is hurting, perhaps we can direct them to help, or get help to them. I don’t know – I don’t think anyone does. There is no one solution to the growing problem and definitely no easy one. I do think however we can all start by caring a little more, reaching out, pulling together. We are our brothers’ keepers.