Knowing That I Can Do It
Part One – I Stayed Angry
I was born in Detroit, raised here until I was seven. Single family home, twin sister, mental and physical abuse. I wasn’t a perfect kid. Never felt loved. Never did anything right. So, I would do things to try and feel love. I went to jail at seventeen, and pretty much stayed away. Every once in a while I’d try again, and it was still there. It’s hard for me to trust people because of that. I was a nerd, a geek, no one ever stood up for me. I packed on twenty, twenty five pounds of muscle lifting weights. And then it really didn’t matter. I stayed angry. Just recently, I’ve become un-angry. Not as angry as I used to be.
Part Two – I Was A Runner
Running from my drug habit… I was a runner, I went to Europe when I was twenty. Ran right into drugs. I actually brought drugs back.Went back to Michigan, had a warrant out so I got stuck there because I was gonna leave. In ’92 I started dating a lady, my first ex-wife, and we moved to, uh… Florida. And progressively got worse. Got married again, got hooked on crack. Lost that marriage. Cops told me they’d have me locked up doing some serious time by the end of the summer, the way I was running. So, I hauled to San Antonio. Made it to my birthday, and started getting high again. Vicious cycle.
Part Three – I Did Not Want to Come Back Here
Met a lady, she was pretty much paying my bills. And I was using my money to get high. There were a lot of ups. Couple stays in the hospital. Several all-nighters. Money taken. The last thing was… Memorial Day, 2012. She had gotten a car loan so I could go up north for my son’s graduation. I took that money. Bus money. Loaded up one of her cars, and left. I did that on a Saturday, I was out of money by Sunday. Fifteen hours and the next thing you know, I wake up and we’re on our way to Houston. I did not want to come back here. So we wound up at Star of Hope. And then I became homeless. I was in Group, and this girl gave me a name of someone at SEARCH. So I got into the program in July, I think, of 2014.
Part Four – The First Night
It was a Friday night. I went upstairs, I went to sleep, and… it was baseball. The Astros, after Friday-night games, they shoot off fireworks. Well, I jumped straight outta bed, like, ‘What the hell is going on?’ My room is on the back-side, so it was, like, perfect, and I’m, like, ‘Wow!’ It was pretty funny.
Part Five – In My Name
It gives me a steady place that I know I can sleep and feel relatively safe. Now I just have to start putting in more work to get where I wanna go. I’m gonna make more money, save more money. Save enough money to move out of New Hope. Because, alright; I’m fifty-one. Haven’t really lived at home since I was seventeen. But this is the first place I’ve ever had that was in my name. It’s taught me here how to be more… productive. Knowing that I can do it. That I can pay my rent and still be able to live.
Part Six – A Place to Sleep Safe
This is not rehab. This is not a half-way house. These are apartments. We come and go as we choose. I don’t plan on being on housing for 10-15 years. I work and I try to just pay my own way. I don’t take what I don’t need. Because, to me, that’s abuse of the system. I don’t want to be a career “house-er.”