Every day of existing is a difficult task. To take your first step or your first breath takes courage. It is so easy for people to take you for granted and hurt you, but we are also capable of doing the same thing to them.
We are constantly making decisions, but not all the decisions we make are good ones, and ultimately what others do can affect us deeply.
As we grow older life can seem a lot more difficult and problems become tougher to handle. In our lifetime we will face a variety of difficult situations, such as low points and highpoints, family problems, unemployment, homelessness and bad relationships; it is how we deal with these situations that show our true character and what we are really made of. Through all my ups and down I say ain’t life funny!
In a matter of months I lost everything that I owned. My husband walked out on me after 19 years of marriage without even a goodbye. He left all the bills behind including the mortgage and left me to fend for myself. This was my second marriage. I had been married since I was 17, so I went straight from my parents’ house into married life. I had never lived on my own, so this was all new to me. I tried to work this situation out to the best of my ability, but in the end I realize I could not handle this alone. I lost everything to include, house, job, furniture and all.
I decided to move back to my hometown and start over. I figured what better place to get a fresh start. Home was not like it used to be, and everyone was wary of me, because they knew I lost everything and thought that I was there trying to use them.
To top it all off I was in a motor vehicle accident in which I broke my arm, injured my back and could not work. I felt uncomfortable and unwelcomed when trying to stay with family, so a friend put ,me in contact with her cousin who was a male, but who was willing to let me stay with him. Unfortunately, this was a vulnerable time in my life and we ended up becoming lovers. This was the biggest mistake of my life. He drank alcohol every day and I soon found myself doing the same thing. Before I knew what happened, I found myself addicted to alcohol until I woke up one day and asked myself, “what are you doing?” Right then and there I made the decision to relocate and get myself together.
I relocated to Richmond, Virginia, where I knew no one. I went to inquire about living in a homeless shelter and I was accepted. This was new to me and I never thought I would end up here, but I knew that I had to do this on my own.
I had no support system. While in the shelter, they provided me with a place to stay, bus tickets for my job search and food; I was here for three weeks. Every day I got on the bus and searched for work. It wasn’t long before I was interviewing and within two weeks I found a job. It was not much of a job, but it was a job. I took a position as a cashier in the food court at the Veterans Hospital.
While working there, I was able to find me a place to stay on my own, and I continued my job search. I eventually found a job with the State as a Veterans Service Representative, which paid substantially more.
Prior to this I was working for minimum wage. Now I could finally get myself together, or could I. Early one morning the cops knocked on my door with divorce papers. I did not have money to get a lawyer to represent me, so I went to legal aid and I was coached by a nice attorney by the name of Mrs. Leachman. I will never forget her. I appeared in court in North Carolina and represented myself. Some people in the courtroom were in tears others were just angry about the way I had been treated. The judge told me that I could come back to court anytime I got ready with an attorney so that I could be awarded alimony and other things that I may be entitled to.
With the divorce behind me I could finally get on with my life, or so I thought. It was now the end of June and I was preparing to return to South Carolina for the fourth of July, when I received an email from my sister informing me that my mother was very ill. I returned home to find out that my mother was dying from leukemia. To my amazement all of my sisters were too busy with their lives and their jobs to take out time to become caregiver to my mother. I notified my job of my situation and was able to take leave to care for her, until the leave ran out. When the leave ran out I was forced with another dilemma. I ended up quitting the job that I needed so desperately and continued to care for my mother.
On August 8th, she succumbed to her illness and died. Once again I was homeless. I moved to Columbia, SC with my daughter. I found a job with the City of Columbia and that is where I have been since then. I found a place of my own and it is not easy, but I have been on my own for four years. The road has not been easy, but I am finally settling into some normalcy in my life. I am enrolled in school and working. It is a little stressful and I don’t have much time for anything else, but I am looking to the future and where this new endeavor will take me. I still have time for Christian meetings, to volunteer in homeless shelters and to do my charity work. This makes me feel needed and like I am giving something back out of the little that I have.
So in conclusion I repeat, in our lifetime we will face a variety of difficult situations, such as low points and highpoints, family problems, unemployment, homelessness and bad relationships; it is how we deal with these situations that show our true character and what we are really made of. So through all my up and downs, I still say ain’t life funny!