Otherwise known as: I am no longer homeless:-)! I now have an apartment of my own. I spent New Years Eve in my own place, and I am so very grateful to God. I do not miss that homeless shelter one bit…. and, yet, I don’t believe that I’m about to say this, but I am actually glad I went through it. I did get a romantic partner out of it, which I would have never expected…; I also got a dear young friend, who just had a little baby… so I am now an “Aunt” since I consider the mother to be the younger sister that I never had. And I have learned what I can tolerate when I have to. I also learned to trust in God even more than I thought I already did. I learned how important it is to get rest for my body (thanks to the lack of it at the shelter), and how desperately I need quiet and privacy (again, thanks to the lack of it at the shelter). I’ve learned to be careful to have a healthy diet. I may no longer end up being a “night owl”; I used to go to sleep at 1 or 2 in the morning, and then sleep through to 11 or 12… or 1. Now I wake up at 7-8 am, and go to sleep by 9… this after nearly a year of waking up at 5:30 am and having to leave the dorm by 6:30 am, and trying to go to sleep before 10 (lights out was at 11, but I tried to get to sleep before that). I may end up neater as a result of this: my new romance likes to be neat – I would pick a guy who likes to be neat <good-natured roll of eyes>… I personally tend to be a mess (just ask my family or close friends). Maybe my guy will get me to reform??… could be… And after living with some women who were anything but neat, I’ve realized how unpleasant a mess can be.
A new part of my life journey: we’ll see if I can correct the mistakes I made in the previous parts of the journey. I’ll also see where the romance goes. I’ve gained confidence from being loved and finally having a man in my life as attracted to me as I am to him. It took me until I was 53 (the romance started on my 53rd birthday, as a matter of fact), but truly: better late than never!
I’m also planning on working on a doctorate in history. I haven’t forgotten that. I’m trying to pick up on the French (already had one European language with the German, need a second one). I’m still working on what area of European history that I want. Medieval, Renaissance, or 18th century? Don’t know yet. That’s something to work on. It will be English/British history: that much I know.
Dreams are wonderful things… and I am grateful to the Lord for the chance to dream these dreams in my own apartment.
The picture is of Konstanz, one of the towns in the previous part of my journey – not where I live now <grin>… I would love to get back to it while I’m doing the doctorate, though… or before:-)
Ooops — I’ve been forgetting to get to my blog! Sorry about that. I’ve been so busy reconnecting on Facebook, that I’ve forgotten about posting here… no excuse, but at least it’s an explanation. As you can see from the title, I am STILL at the homeless shelter. Sigh!! However: I am in my last weeks here. I am on the waiting list for the apartments where I’ll be moving to, so it’s a matter of “WHEN” I’ll move and NOT “if” I’ll move. I thank the dear Lord for that. I got on the waiting list for the senior/disabled housing (I qualify under the disabled label) on the day before my birthday. I spent my birthday knowing that I will not be homeless for long. Next week (July 7), I will have a phone interview with Social Security (with my case manager present – thank heavens!!) about my disability application; I am praying so hard that it gets accepted! I really hate having no income! I am really praying hard that – IF IT IS GOD’S WILL – I will be able to move to an apartment at Winston-Summit BEFORE July is over. As my Dad always said though: “We shall see, what we shall see”. (I finally realized the origin of that quote: Dad was quoting from Rudyard Kipling’s Puck of Pook’s Hill). God may have other plans. I wanted to be out of here by my birthday (early in June). That didn’t happen, but what DID happen was that I started dating a really great guy. I feel blessed:-) Even in the homeless shelter, good things can happen:-) By the way: I am still working on learning (or re-learning) hymns. I continue to be nurtured by them. I now have about 5 pages of hymns in my pocketbook to pull out and read when I want to be refreshed and nurtured. That has been another good thing that has come out of homelessness: pressing the “restart button” on using hymns to build up and refresh my faith.
I love this time of year. I can sense Spring in the air, but there is still the crispness if winter hanging about. I like Winter, I hate summer, so I always prefer the beginning of spring to the end of it. When other people feel trapped by the cold of winter, I feel trapped by the heat of summer… At least in North Carolina, though, the summer doesn’t last forever like it does in Florida. This is yet another reason why I prefer to hang around in the homeless shelter in Winston-Salem while working towrd getting a place of my own – I have NO intention of moving from this state (or even this town) that I love so much. I feel much healthier than I did even a couple of weeks ago (the bronchitus cleared out this past week); the asthma never has come back since I moved up here to NC from Florida… and I heartily thank the dear Lord for that!
I did find out on one of my trips to the E.R. this past month that I am beginning to show the first signs of Congestive Heart Failure. Both my beloved Grandmom and Grandpop (Mom’s parents) died from it – and Mom probably would have, if she hadn’t ended up with pancreatic cancer instead – so I’m not surprised that the condition popped up in me. My father’s father (and *his* father) were already dead at the age that I am now from heart disease. Despite all of this (and my rather weak body consitution to start with), I rather suspect that I will probably end up living into my 90s – it would be just my luck to make it past 100: cracking jokes about my bad health all along the way.
Well, I’ll try to let you know how the seart for housing is going when I write my next blog! There is hope in the Spring:-)!
Well, the position and housing didn’t work out, so I am temporarily dislocated. For reasons I won’t describe here (having to do with conflicts with the female half of this senior couple), I am now without employment – or housing. I still love Winston-Salem, and am still here, but I needed to find a new place to live. It’s turning out to be a blessing oddly enough. I’m finding out that I’m quite resilient. I have also found myself a case manager (yes, it CAN be done) to help me with the housing and disability processes; I was never able to navigate when I was trying to do it on my own. So all of this actually turns out to be a blessing. Luckily, this occurred in the winter and not in the summer; yes, you *did* read that correctly: “winter, not summer”. My body handles the cold *much* better than the heat. I’ve done more walking in one week (going from appointment to another) than I have for the previous 3 years. Good. I needed the exercise:-)! I know the bus system better too. I’m still finding that I trust God to provide; I knew that, but it’s nice to get confirmation…
I feel like I’m living a soap opera sometimes, but things will calm down and settle into a better pattern at some point. Meanwhile: I get to learn the joys of tapping into North Carolina’s housing (and other) resources… and other wondrous experiences. Life can *really* change quickly sometimes!!… and, yes, God DOES provide in all circumstances…
The lady I help look after has been having to go to the hospital every day, and I and her husband wait in the waiting room. It got me reflecting on all the times I waited for Mom at doctor’s appointments, and got me missing St. Augustine (we used to go out to different favorite restaurants in the St. Aug. area after Mom’s appointments). It also got me writing – miracle of miracles.
I sat with Mom, for a few hours sometimes, wondering how long it would take.
Not how long the visit would last: no, wondering how long I’d have my mother. It hurt to wonder.
Each appointment brought it closer; how long would I have my Mom with me.
I was warned that Pancreatic cancer was *very* quick… sometimes a month or two. It was longer; my mother’s will was strong. It was 7 months: without chemo or radiation.
My Mom is gone now; four years this coming September.
It’s January now: four years since the cancer was first found. I miss her so much.
I moved from where we lived; I couldn’t enjoy the beach anymore – I missed her there too much. I couldn’t enjoy the restaurants I used to love any more; I couldn’t enjoy wandering the streets of the old town that I loved any more – I missed her there too much.
Besides, I hated Florida so much, I said — and meant it.
I moved to the North Carolina Piedmont, and love it. It’s right for me. It’s hills and valleys and coolness are good for me. I’m glad for the change.
I still miss Mom; I still grieve, but I’m moving on… or so I say.
I’m sitting in a hospital again, with a friend waiting for a friend to finish an appointment – a procedure.
I’m thinking back four years.. to other appointments; to a different town, and different time, and I miss my Mom – so much!
Embarrassing to admit, but couldn’t get my last month’s post written, because I couldn’t remember the address of my own blog . Somebody please tell me how I managed to earn two Masters when I’m this forgetful! Ah well, this will be another short post as I still have to come to the library to do this, and I only get use of “my” couple’s van for an hour or so. On the whole it’s going very well; just some rough edges that need smoothing once in a while… As I end this New Year, I find myself profoundly grateful for where I have ended up. I love the family I help out, and I love where they live – I also have much more privacy (my own room)… and MUCH cooler temperatures inside – for which I am profoundly grateful!! I have a renewed sense of purpose and gratitude for what God can accomplish with me & in me.
God’s blessings for each and every one of you!!!
But only have about five minutes to write something, so I’ll just let you know that the move has been worth it — though there are still adjustments to me made. Still don’t have use of the car – and I am missing my internet like crazy! I’m back a couple of hours at my former boss’s place to get the rest of my stuff, and he has graciously allowed me to use his internet connection.
Will try to write (a lot) more next month!:-)!