From that point on we were homeless. We ended up moving around from place to place, hotels, motels, and shelters for a looong time….It became normal and I forgot how life used to be. Being that my mother was always a quiet, poker-faced woman who rarely complained or talked a lot, I had no idea how serious our situation was, being young and innocent too…..
I have vivid memories about each place we stayed, schools I attended, fascinating/broken people I met, and being exposed to shady characters, and the”dark side” of life….At one point, we were literally “on the run” with our father, and stayed at a beach side motels in Toronto…It was just life. I didn’t feel in danger, or afraid…I felt protected and safe. I was happy being with my mother, father and siblings…..I felt at home throughout those times and I have a warm feeling in my heart when I reminisce…..Those are the stories I used to love to talk with my siblings about…We had fun most of the time, and we found ways to entertain ourselves and made it a group effort. That was the beauty of it all…..
Those times are more precious than gold to me. I learned and saw a lot, good and bad, but I can honestly say that I felt more at home then, than I do now in my current situation. The beauty of this town, the suburban comfort, the beauty and unique design of my surroundings, can not replace or fill the void of feeling at home. I know for a fact that material items, a pretty picture, doesn’t do it for me. I wouldn’t understand how valuable it is to build a home for yourself, the physical and spiritual aspects of it all, if I didn’t have to grow these experiences….
We eventually left the last women’s shelter with our mother and my mother was able to move us into a townhouse in a town in the GTA. We moved into a house again, and I remember running around the fresh, new, carpeted place thinking…Okay this is HOME! Plus I had my own bedroom that I was going to be sharing with my twin sister…I felt a deep sense of pride…..We resided there from then on, no more homelessness…..
So now as my birthday approaches and I’m waiting patiently to find out the status of my place, living day to day out of rubbermaid bins, and luggage, I tell myself that I will be home soon…..I’ve seen the worst it could be, and I’ve fortunately never had to live on the streets. I’m warm and safe, and focusing on what I DO have but I can not fake the fact that I don’t feel at home in this large, lovely, vacant space…..
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