I still feel like a homeless person. I have no money and no income with an SSDI case pending. Once a person is forced to live on the streets and in shelters, you never forget that life. There is compassion and a comradery for others experiencing homelessness. And you never forget. Many times, when I could, I have given food and water, and pulled a homeless person in from the rain for a cup of coffee–this including while I was homeless myself.
I have been #NoLongerHomeless since April 7, 2011. I am now living at Marah’s, a permanent housing program of Deborah’s Place. This organization gives shelter and housing to homeless women. In my location there are thirty of us residing. Without this having been offered to me, I would be on the street not knowing where my life was headed. And I still don’t forget. My mind is now wired to think about homelessness issues. To this day not only do I offer to help and feed the homeless if I can, but I still think like a homeless person. I truly suffer “backpack envy” when I see a really awesome backpack that would have been a great for me when I was homeless. Believe me, I was known around town for my backpacks! I would pack whatever I could inside. My pack was actually weighed a few times. Its heaviest known weight was about 72 pounds. I walked everywhere from town to town carrying that thing on my back. Often times I would have an extra bag for any foods I could get. Sometimes I carried yet another bag–a sleeping bag or blankets. Without trying in my walk tonight I found several places where I might set up camp at night if I was still homeless. Some places were occupied. Its an automatic thought to think like i am still homeless–like backpack envy–because, I will never forget. My brain is too hard wired now on the subject of homelessness. I wish I could do more to help.