Sunday, July 21, 2013

When the Worst Happens....

What do you do when the worst thing you can imagine happens?

There is something liberating about having the worst happen... it's got to get better from here, right?

I don't think anyone growing up dreams of someday becoming homeless... it is nothing we aspire to. I fought becoming homeless and, for a while, lived with people I would not have chosen and felt I had no say or control because it was not my space. There is something about not paying for the space I inhabit that makes me feel like a second class citizen with no rights.

So now we, me and my dog GiGi, are homeless... currently living in a tent. GiGi and I were lucky to be able to band together with someone else and split the cost of a campsite, so we have a legal place to sleep, but for how long?

The basics...
It is an education in basics and how to provide them: food, shelter, safety, bathroom access, cleanliness. The first night, I got food poisoning and spent the night with my body evacuating and turning itself inside-out, then sleeping all the next day. Today, I am at square one in almost every way.

Everything takes longer than I think it should...
Boiling water for coffee takes longer on a camp stove (and I am immensely grateful there is a camp stove). Laundry needs to be done more frequently because there is limited space for clothes. Every time I leave, there is the possibility things will be stolen, so the valuables travel with me (and I hope they are not stolen from the car).  I spend too much time trying to figure out how to make it better and how to do what I need to do. Electricity is needed DAILY for the iPhone and laptop, plus wifi.... where do I find these? Is it free? What do I do with GiGi while I am recharging?

Nothing is easy. The tent I borrowed is not tall enough to stand up in and I have not found a graceful way to exit the tent. I kinda fall out into the dirt (cursing), and then try to stand up, making sure I am not flashing anyone. There is just enough room inside for the inflatable queen size mattress I borrowed and all of GiGi's bedding. My clothes are in a suitcase outside.

I am learning how to take baby steps in living.

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