Here we are at the final stage of this journey out of homelessness. As it began on February 28, 2013, after close to fifteen years of being homeless, I didn’t know if I would ever be off the streets. I have now established myself in my home. When I started on this journey, I entered a dwelling that was void of all furniture just a bunch of walls, which kept the elements out. Gradually, it started to shape into an apartment. With contributions from family, different organizations, and regular customers that passed me at the West Side Market as I sold the Street Chronicle. There were Market sales staff who gave me food to eat. There were newspaper customers who gave me clothes and quilts so I wouldn’t have to sleep on the carpet floors. I had family members who gave me a television, inflatable mattress, pots, pans, microwave, and living room furniture. Still there were a lot of things missing. What really makes where you live a home?
I don’t believe it is all these material things that I have described, but a whole lot more. Its entertaining people from time to time. Its feeling the love of friends and family when they come to see you and you feel the genuine love and respect that they exhibit toward being in your home.
They say, “home is where the heart is.” Well, my heart is now within these walls. I am not ashamed to start calling the place where I live “my home.” I sit back now and reminisce on my homeless career and all the things that I have called my home: a dumpster, a portable toilet, the back of a dock, a plastic bubble, under a bridge, a bus stop, a bus, and probably a whole lot more, but now I really have a home. Praying kept me going. I’m so blessed.
Where do I go from here? I can say for sure that it will not be backwards. Forward all the way. I am doing the right thing. I have seen so many of my homeless buddies get a chance to get off the streets and off the “homeless roles” only to become repeat offenders in the homeless community. They rejoin the homeless crowd due mostly to bad management of their money and not stopping their negative attitude that they had when they were homeless. This was mainly a result of drinking and drugging.
When you’re homeless there are no responsibilities. Now, there are tons of responsibilities such as food, rent, utilities, cable, basic supplies and when you have a home you must maintain all these bills if you want to maintain your home. I can tell you I do! I’m not missing those cold days and lonely nights outside. I am enjoying being inside. I was in prison for a long time, I didn’t want to be inside nowhere, but I’m off the streets, and thankful. The Creator has blessed me with this home and I am going to enjoy his blessing until he calls me to my Heavenly Home. As I sit here and try to put my thoughts on paper I am trying to show you how grateful I am for being off the streets.
Oh yeah, before I forget, let me give a special thanks to my co-worker Kim who blessed me with a complete bedroom set, dishes, a couch, microwave, and a lot of things to make this home complete. So, as I finish the living on the streets part of my life, to now living in my own home I must say I am still a little apprehensive about being on my own. So the next part of making this a real home is finding someone to share it with. All I can say is women beware Buzzy is on the look out to share my home with you!
So, ladies gentlemen and children of all ages I hope you have enjoyed this journey with me and that I have found the right words to explain going from the homeless roles to having a home of my own. As this year comes to an end I hope I will be able to tell you I have grace this home with some companionship. So, until next time take good care of yourself and remember to always keep the Faith!!
Copyright Street Chronicle October 2013 Cleveland Ohio