I was thinking of my life as it used to be, where getting into my car and going to the movies or meeting or visiting friends or simply going shopping, was all just part of the everyday picture.
While pondering this I realised that it must be difficult, actually impossible, for anyone reading my blogs, and specifically the tales of the homeless shelter, to NOT think that I must be slightly on the "common side" - would that be the right word - to be able to cope with living here.
I also wondered why I would want to explain that I am not, and it's not so much about what "readers" think of me as a person, (unless you meet me face to face) but rather that I want my experience to be fully and properly understood.
How on earth do I tell you who the normal "Skard" is. Well, I can tell you that I used to be painfully uptight and snobbish and full of nonsense, thank God I got over that by age 30. I am reasonably educated and very well-read, wealth is something I am comfortable with and for part of my life took it for granted. I guess I'd call it a level of refinement you either have or don't; and it really isn't about money, it's just where you "fit".
I dreadfuly miss having my own bathroom, and own kitchen. I miss perfume, lovely smelly soaps, good skincare, wine glasses and crockery and clothes that are not in disrepair and going to the hairdresser. My private healthcare providers. Linen that is fresh and soft and clean. Flowers. Little herb pots. Shopping and cooking my own food. And so on. I am so far from the kind of environment in which I truly feel "at home".
Fortunately, I have always been curious about life and people and HOW people's spirit and personality manifest is endlessly intriguing to me.
Which is why I am managing at this shelter; there is so much I dislike; dicey hygiene, ugliness of the surroundings, ex-convicts and drug addicts and drunkenness and swearing, a general shortage and no-one to really have a conversation with....
It was mainly the idea of homelessness and shelter living that drove me to attempt suicide.
Homelessness is not an overnight condition; I can see how things have unravelled, specifically over the last few years as my illness took hold, and I accept the how's, why's and wherefore's of this long fall... and that there is no-one to blame for it..
So when I write about the place and the people and the crazies, the irritations and the amusements, it is not because I identify but because I have a feeling of seperateness, which I am thankful for, but I also have to accept that I have some things in common with quite a few of the poeple here.
But all my cleverness and smartness and resources will count for nothing if I do not use these resources apply myself and conquer my illness ..... and very importantly, get support and love; there are times when I can see how easy it would be to just slip into the system ....
Every person at the shelter has a story of who they ONCE were, what they had and how they lost it ..... and I go to the pub in exercise takkies (white) with bad hair, and I drink quarts of beer because it is cheap .....