Connecting with Community

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Homelss and still day two

Overwhelmed Its 7:39am and I’ve just rolled out of bed. My daily routine requires me to leave my home at 7:30am. I scurry without direction, finally bathed, clothed and everything in hand I head out the front door. It’s a bit cloudy and mist softly kisses me. I look upwards and slowly close my eyes. This tender moment takes me and once more I am back to day two of my homeless experience. I am back on the sidewalk with my eyes wide open. I blink gently simply to allow my tears to make their way onto the cold hard sidewalk. I can hear myself breath and that soothes me just a bit. I begin to think of my home and my heart hurts at the mere thought of my children having to suffer homelessness. I feel so alone even among others, I am alone. Homeless and its day two in the afternoon, we make it back to our appointed spot. We are the second group to arrive and I start to look at the faces of all the other “homeless participants” as they file in. In the young participants I see anger, shame, frustration, excitement and defeat. There is a group that has scored big; they received help from all the places they went to. There is no worry there as they have a skip in their step as they walk toward us. All is good in their world. I notice another group and there is just shame and defeat. They did not get help. They are hungry and looking for someone to share. I bow my head as I sit under a tree to keep the sun from having its way with me. I sit next to my family and watch as a mix of emotions takes us. This overwhelming feeling of guilt consumes me because we have eaten and others have not. This food we consumed was made possible only because of deceit. I sit helpless and hopeless; my desire is to help all those in need of food or something to drink. I sit not being able to do anything for them. My hurt is turning into anger for those that are loaded with plenty to eat. My question is why them? What’s wrong with me? We sit under a large shade tree waiting for someone to open the gate that keeps us from using the outhouse. I see one of ours; he goes around the fence and sneaks in through the back. At this point I have thrown my arms up in defeat. I will find no order in this crisis. I can do nothing about my situation. There is no plan in place. Finally the gate is open and we gather just inside of this uncomfortable chain link fence. The announcer speaks and we are told that dinner will be served inside. The cost is $6.00. I am standing just outside of the outhouse and I see the “cashier” ask part of our group if we are eating dinner. Instantly they all bow their head and one speaks without looking up and says “we don’t have any money”. My heart is completely crushed, we don’t belong, and we are insufficient. I feel inadequate because I cannot provide for my new family. Today I stop at a family’s house, I knock at the door and the sweet momma answers. She stands at the door and intently listens to every word I say. I tell her I come bearing food. Tears consume her and she invites me in. Tonight she is not eating so that her child will have plenty. My son Josh and my husband Jacob carry the food inside her home. I hear her little one whisper thank you to my boys and my heart gives way. I stand humbly in her kitchen. Through a storm of tears I meekly pray and she interrupts by asking God for blessings for my family. She thanks Him for providing and I am swept with emotion. She says “you don’t understand what you’ve done for us.” I assure her I do.

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