Posted in anxiety, bugaboos, crowdfunding, depression, disability, emergency, eviction, food cravings, homeless, homelessness, job hunting, life, storage, urgent

6/25: Crowdfunding and all that…

Life is what it is at times. Since the post yesterday about all the stuff going on, more has bubbled to the surface. Gossip, bullying, ice cream, sabotage (didn’t work, so y’all can suck it!), more drama and gossip/bullying… you name it.

I know the concept of a women’s shelter is for personal safety and all, but man… anyone who thought putting 60 women under one roof was a good idea was not too bright. Or at least never had more than one woman/girl at any given time living in their lives.

I could delve into political stuff here, but not on this post. That topic will be its own post.

Right now, I’m stuck. I have a possible chance at moving into a shared “student housing” apartment building, but don’t have the funds yet. Hopefully I’ll get approved for disability, which will be a huge factor. But that won’t happen yet. So, yeah, I’m stuck. I’m struggling to get funds to save my storage from auction yet again. I know I’ll have some, but need to get at least half of 1300 so it can be pulled. I have $300 coming in from late last week, and some donations on FB, but not enough to get to the halfway point. Funds previously sent have gone to bills. As much as I’d have loved to set them aside for storage, there were other things more urgent. I’d be further along.

I’m also trying to find somewhere to stash some bins of things one friend was stashing for me but has threatened to get rid of at the end of the month if I don’t retrieve them. I need to either cram them into storage, if I’m able to get it paid up completely, or find somewhere else to stash them. At least until shit settles down.

So, applying for jobs I may have difficulty keeping one way or another. Looking at different housing options. Trust me, I’d love to have my own bathroom and kitchen, but sharing either with just one or two people is freaking paradise compared to sharing three toilets and four showers with 20 other women and a kitchen where my food gets pilfered regularly.

For now, focus on storage. Get it pulled from auction. That matters the most right now. Then housing and work and all the other things running around in my life.

Oh, and enjoying the look on the face of my ice cream thief when they find I salted it. I play dirty when I need to.

~A

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Posted in activism, anxiety, asexuality, bugaboos, C-PTSD, chronic pain, community, crowdfunding, depression, disability, dogs, eviction, family, homeless, homelessness, LGBTQIA Pride, life, PTSD, society, storage, urgent

6/24/18: #PTSD, #Bullying, #Asexual #Pride, and #crowdfunding

Being here in the shelter sets my PTSD off in ways it doesn’t in my usual ways. Loud voices, doors slamming. Most of my triggers are related more to men and crowds, so being on transit during commute times is hell for me. But being in a building with all women with behaviors I haven’t seen since high school and raging estrogen flares… I’m reminded of how rare friendships with women are for me. I get along with some here, but many are wired in a way that makes my PTSD bubble to the surface.

I pull away from people in general when this hits. Add pain to the mix and I get snippy and my sarcasm level goes up.

I think I’ve done enough back and forth with doctors at the clinic. I made the semi-crack that I should call the patient advocate office. Then I decided that maybe I will. I don’t know if any good will come of it. I’ve had both my GP and the doctor filling in for her (she’s on a personal leave) reject the idea of getting anything more than x-rays. The pain that’s been most prevalent lately has been soft tissue damage from the fall down the stairs (well, bouncing) 5 1/2 years ago. I had my knees up with my feet against one wall to try to stop my descent as I bounced down the stairs. Soft tissue damage doesn’t show on x-rays.

Back to the shelter here. We had some bullying here several weeks back. I defended the person who was being bullied and was thus made a target as well. So, two days ago, one of the bullies was gossiping to a newer resident about the stuff from weeks ago, as well as subtle snark toward another. I walked past them in the hallway. I brushed it off, hoping it was a one-off moment.

Later that evening, I heard another resident pulling the same gossip crap, bashing the woman from weeks ago, to the same recipient. I hesitated a moment, but then turned back around and reported both incidents to the RA’s here.

Yesterday morning, I heard that same recipient tell the first gossip that they didn’t want to hear anything more. My guess is that she was told to not participate in it. Here, gossip is frowned upon and against the “good neighbor” policy.

Fast forward a few hours. One of the RA’s knocks on my door and says there are some residents who have complained that the litterbox smells. All the way down the hall. I use the Tidycats Breeze system for her. While the pellets are overdue for a change, her box isn’t that bad. I think the cat food smells worse. She’s mostly eating wet food right now due to needing meds. I’ve since heard from one other resident that no, she can’t smell it. Some of the dogs have issues of their own and have a habit of peeing on their dog beds. And their doors were open while mine wasn’t for the vast majority of the day (save for opening it to go to and from the bathroom).

I put two and two together and realized it’s the bullies getting their hackles back up. They don’t like being called out for their bad behavior. I’ll keep calling them on it. Bullying and gossip have no place in a respectable society. Yes, I know, I’m talking about a homeless shelter, but it applies. If you want to be respected, you have to work on respecting others.


One of the other situations here is one person who has this negative energy and has some kind of burning desire to be the center of attention. An Energy Vampire. She has triggered my PTSD in ways I didn’t think of. I grew up with a similar person. Always trying to outdo me in “how bad my day was” and other things. Always negative. This person is even worse. She has managed, within two weeks, to alienate or piss off almost everyone on our floor. That’s skill, man… not a GOOD skill, but a skill. Oof.


PRIDE!!

So, I’ve always been open about my sexuality. I am Aromantic Asexual. That basically means I don’t experience any romantic or sexual attraction.

Once more for those in the back:

Aromantic Asexual: I don’t experience romantic or sexual attraction.

It has nothing to do with the act of sex, the libido, etc. Just attraction.

Now, I’m also a sexual assault survivor, so the act of sex is kind of ‘meh’ to me. Some Aces (asexuals) enjoy sex with their partners, some have libidos, some don’t want any kind of touch… the array of possibilities is endless with us.

Do I find some men attractive? Yup. *cough*Tom Hiddleston*cough* … but it’s more of an aesthetic attraction. Oh, and several of the men Verillas uses for their models… oof. Very good looking men. Oh, and I want most of the stuff they offer for women.

For more information on Asexuality, go here: AVEN Wiki.

I’m not ashamed or afraid of representing who and what I am. If not for my PTSD and anxiety, I’d have gone to Pride here last weekend. Because of my PTSD, I have a difficult time with any kind of touch (the Energy Vampire mentioned above touched my shoulder and I had a hard time staying calm while I explained that I cannot handle touch and that not everyone wants that and she needs to ask permission before ANY touch).


I’ve been looking at dog breeds as potential ideas for a service dog. I’ve gone from Dobermans and Rotties to Tervurens and Groenedael’s. Saw a Terv weeks ago here and just fell in love. We shall see…


It’s been a rough week. And now I’m down to a bit under four days to raise what I need for storage. I have about $300 coming in from two tasks last week, but I still need help getting at least half of $1300 before noon on Thursday the 28th. I really should get more than half, but I know that might be difficult.

Any and all help via PayPal is immensely appreciated.

Posted in anxiety, C-PTSD, crowdfunding, depression, disability, domestic abuse, emergency, eviction, faith, grief, homeless, homelessness, life, observations, poverty line, PTSD, sexual assault, society, storage, transitions, urgent

5/23/18: Facing the Past (and #crowdfunding)

Yes, crowdfunding. What funds I have made this month have gone to catching up on other smaller things and groceries after my food stamps ran out. Because it sucks being on food stamps when you have Celiacs. Everything is more expensive. Also being in a shelter where you have limits on how much you can have in the fridge/freezer/cabinet makes food costs go up as you can’t really do family packs of chicken thighs and such. So, help getting storage settled before the end of May is ideal. Auction would be next month, in June… and that’ll come up really quickly if I’m not careful.

So… facing the past. I met with my therapist yesterday and chatted with one of the mentors here at the shelter today. Both women have pointed out something that is related, but a bit different.

My therapist has figured out that my life pretty much went upside down and sideways when my dad passed away in 2014.

The mentor today said that every time we’ve talked, I bring up one thing: the repeated sexual assault back in 1994.

Two major events in my adult life. Two events I swore up and down I’ve dealt with via therapy and such.

While I’ve dealt with the shit on the surface, I’m realizing now that the rest of the proverbial iceberg is slowly emerging and I don’t know how to deal with it. The frustrating part is that I can type or write out stories dealing with it, or poetry, or even essays. *cough*blog posts*cough*

But speaking? I struggle with the words.

The mentor today is going to find the titles of some books and see if she can find some groups for me to go to that can help. She also mentioned that the situation of being homeless in and of itself is traumatic. But I’ve been in some form of survival mode since 1994, never letting myself really live. Really work my ass off at succeeding.

At what? I’m not sure.

Sadly, I have limited sessions for therapy. After this coming week, we may be spacing them out more. Which is fine, but it still kind of sucks.

I have a very long road ahead of me. Be patient with me. I have a lot to unpack. A lot of work to do.

~A

Posted in activism, anxiety, bigotry, bugaboos, C-PTSD, community, depression, disability, domestic abuse, eviction, health, homeless, homelessness, housing, life, observations, politics, PTSD, society

5/9/18: #Homelessness and #Elitism

This started as an FB post, but I needed to vent and my connection won’t let me post there.

…..

There’s a pompous asshole or three in my old neighborhood on NextDoor bitching about the homeless. And y’all know how I feel about elitist shitholes who get whiny about us homeless folk. Several others are stepping up and chewing them out politely. One even went to say that maybe the ones who whine need to move out of the urban setting to a suburb or countryside area.

Basically, if all you do is whine and stomp your feet about the homeless on the street, then you’re contributing to the PROBLEM and NOT contributing to the SOLUTION. Shut up or put up. Are there mentally ill and drug addicted homeless? Yes. And they are (many times) the most visible and vocal so they end up being seen as the “majority” of homeless. They are one segment of the homeless population. Many are working poor who got pushed out. And others struggling like myself to just get through each day due to one issue or another. There are families. To lump us all together as junkies and “psychos” is a disservice to the population as a whole.

I’ve refrained from posting or commenting over there. I may have to write something regarding the homeless population demographics and post it there and here on my blog.

What people like them forget is that everyone is one or two paychecks, a job loss, a medical catastrophe, or other events, away from being homeless themselves. I want them to just listen. Try to understand who we are that they’re whining about. Because we aren’t all what they think we are. Some, yes, but most are not.

Obviously this is something very personal to me. I am educated and homeless. No drugs or alcohol put me here. No major mental illnesses. Depression and anxiety… PTSD, sure. But I can function to a reasonable degree. Not everyone has that ability. And those are the ones left behind since the days of mass closures of mental hospitals across the country. [More info here on that]

If you refuse to be part of the solution, you are part of the problem. Stop being a pain in the ass and start working on solutions to help end homelessness. And shipping them to other cities and states doesn’t count.

~A

Posted in anxiety, community, crowdfunding, depression, emergency, eviction, faith, family, friends, homeless, homelessness, life, poverty line, storage, urgent

4/12/12: 4 hours #crowdfunding

Is it possible I could get it pulled from auction? A slight possibility. He knows I refuse to give up and he’ll have the message from the corporate customer service center. Even if he does pull it this morning, I have a very long way to go to raise the funds. If folks would feel better, I can set up another YouCaring campaign. Just know that the processing company (WePay) behind them and GFM take a cut. Even if YouCaring doesn’t.

Please let me know in a comment or on FB/Twitter if people would prefer using that.

I just prefer PP because it is fast, usually very easy, and no fees.

I’ll keep folks updated.

~A

Posted in anxiety, community, crowdfunding, depression, emergency, eviction, friends, homeless, homelessness, life, storage, urgent

4/11/18: Not panicking….. not… GAAAAAAHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!

ALL HANDS ON DECK!!!!

So, I called and left a message for D at the local storage building. Said I’m not giving up, etc… then I called the main customer service number for the parent company. I talked to a lady there who made notes on my account and sent D a message. She couldn’t guarantee acceptance of a partial payment and removing it from auction, but I’m calling him in the morning to see what he says. I want… NEED… to get as much raised before 10am tomorrow Pacific time.

Between my earnings from Sunday’s task and the donations that came in today and yesterday, I have a meager 200. I don’t make much. Hence actual job hunting, which is also sucking.

There is one person with a promise of funds likely Friday due to banking and PP fuckery. And waiting on a call back from another friend. Not sure how much they can help.

So I need ALL HANDS ON DECK!!! Share the ever-loving SHIT out of this post or the stickied post on the home page.

I am trying to NOT have a panic attack. I really don’t need another visit to the ER, thank you.

Donate if you can, share even if you can’t. 

~A

Posted in activism, anxiety, bugaboos, C-PTSD, cats, community, crowdfunding, depression, disability, domestic abuse, emergency, eviction, family, friends, homeless, homelessness, housing, life, observations, Personal, poverty line, PTSD, society, storage, urgent

4/10/18: Stigma of Homelessness & #crowdfunding

2 of ? blogs for today.

SHARE THIS!! PLEASE?
PayPal is the easiest and fastest way.
Auction is at noon on April 12th.
I need a bit under $1400, but would prefer a bit of a cushion at $1500.


If you were to look at me on the street or train or bus, you would never grasp that I’m one of thousands of homeless people here in the United States. Many are working poor, many have mental illnesses of varying types and degrees, some are certainly addicts.

And there are those like me who hit a very bad run of luck and haven’t been able to bounce back easily.

I was evicted from my apartment a bit over a year ago. Since then, I’ve stayed with friends, but needed to get into a different setting that was more helpful. So here I am in a women’s transitional housing shelter with my cat.

Okay, so I do kind of fall under the mental illness category too, with my PTSD and depression. But those inhibit my ability to function like everyone else, not take it away completely like some other illnesses.

But I’m clean cut, take regular showers and do my laundry, take care of myself and my cat, and otherwise function, so I’m not as obvious as others might be.

Anyone reading this could become homeless like me. It takes losing a job or hours cut back and no savings or 401k to help float you for a while. It takes losing key members of your support system. One misstep in this society and you can very easily become one of us.

It reminds me of a homeless woman I knew back in Chicago. She was awesome. Well educated, wildly intelligent. I think she had been a professor or something. We could stand outside the mini-mart and chat about politics, philosophy, religion, world views and culture for hours.

And yet, she was homeless.

I never asked about what happened, but I suspect it was similar to my own. Things going okay and then one day, BOOM! everything is turned upside down. Maybe escaping an abusive situation. Maybe a messy divorce. Maybe lost a job.

There are thousands of us out there. In this situation. We don’t appear stereotypically homeless. But we are.

And if our economy keeps going the way it is under a certain “president,” there will be more.

But here’s the thing: we aren’t all freaks and addicts and thieves. Many of us are clean, friendly people who just need a little help getting back up on our feet. I don’t panhandle, at least out on the street. I just ask for help online. I’ve gotten to the point over the years where I’m not comfortable talking to people in person. I certainly can’t beg face to face.

Since I don’t look homeless, I’m able to overhear conversations on the train between people who look down on the homeless person who is asking for help, or is on the train and sleeping because they couldn’t get sleep the night before. Maybe they smell because they were one who fell between the cracks of even the homeless society and can’t get help. Maybe he’s a vet the VA has long forgotten about.

Do you take the time to learn their stories? There were two women here in my building who are homeless vets themselves. Has the VA helped much? A little here and there, but not enough.

What about the family living in a tent under that overpass? Where is the help for them? There are few places here that help whole families. The shelters we do have here in Portland are for men or women, sometimes with pets, few places for families with kids. And usually those are for mothers with their kids, not whole families.

And some, like me, have belongings they’re trying to save. It kills me that I may lose my dad’s coffin flag and the “parting gift” of the piano I was able to get with estate money because he so badly wanted to see me get back into my music. My costumes, music, books. Things I’ve made or have been made for me.

Housing prices are out of control. We have to try finding work where we are, as we can’t afford to move. And even if we do find work, it isn’t always enough to afford a place to live.

While far too many are dismissive of us, look down on us, I ask that you remember one thing: We are human, and you aren’t too far removed from where we are in life.

~A

Posted in anxiety, community, crowdfunding, emergency, eviction, faith, homeless, homelessness, life, storage, urgent

4/9/18: Where’s #MiracleMax when ya need him? #crowdfunding #urgent

SHARE THIS!! PLEASE?

Miracle Max? Is he still around?

I basically have through the 11th to get funds for storage. Just shy of $1500. Hence my title of asking about Miracle Max. Auction is on Thursday the 12th. Now, if I know the funds will be there in full ready Thursday morning, I can call them and say I’ll be down there before auction. In the past, it’s been around 11am or noon. But I need to know I’ll have it before then.

I’ll do other posts later… I have some musings running around my brain, so I just need to wrangle them and get them working.

Here’s the latest notice… other than my surname and the address they have on me, which is old but I still don’t want it out there, I’m letting it all out there for you to see.

It’s an 8×20 unit with everything I own (save for a few things I have with me and a few boxes at a friend’s house). My whole life is in that storage unit. I want to be totally transparent here. In the past, I’ve cropped out info like the unit number and all, but not today.

Untitled image (9)

 

Well, it’s about chore time for me here at the shelter, so I’ll be back later.

~A

Posted in anxiety, bugaboos, C-PTSD, community, crowdfunding, depression, disability, dreams, emergency, empath life, eviction, faith, family, friends, grief, health, homeless, homelessness, job hunting, life, Personal, PTSD, society, storage, urgent

4/3/18: Rambling Doubts

(Yes, still urgently #crowdfunding to save storage by the 12th. I have until 4/12 to come up with the money. It’ll be more than the $1200 that was my total last month. Add another 305 or so to that and we get to $1500. Pimp my blog out to whomever you can think of who might be willing to share. I don’t have the guts to ping famous people.)

I question my role in society. I have no interest in “fitting in” yet I want and need work that can sustain my life. I don’t need lots of fancy things. Books, music, reasonably decent tech. I don’t need cable.  Just decent wifi. I do like a few fancy things. A new pair of Docs or that antiquarian book I’ve been lusting after for over a decade… but for the most part, I like the little things that make me smile.

I still feel incomplete. This is not the “I need someone to complete me” type of incomplete. I feel like part of me has been ripped away and I don’t know where it went. I don’t fear my past, but I am hypervigilant about people in the present. Because of my PTSD, because I can’t stand touch from men. I make male friends and acquaintances ask permission before hugging me. Men on transit sitting next to me or standing too close make me tense up and my anxiety and heart rate both rise.

Right now, I want to run. I want to get my passport and run. Save all my stuff in storage and then pack my bags and run with my cat in tow. Live in a space in Germany or France or stay in a small house in my great-grandfather’s home village in Switzerland for a while. Get away from things that I feel are holding me back. Reconnect with my family history and experience life away from so much of our U.S. mentality.

But money is needed for any of that, and I can’t even get storage caught up or pay for my passport. Let alone running away.

I am stuck. Maybe it doesn’t seem like it to others, but this is where I am. I have tried getting work in fields where others around me say “you could easily get work in this field.” Yet, no interviews, not even email rejections. I am adrift in a society that doesn’t value the weirdos like me. The ones who have multiple abilities.

I wonder at times if there is anywhere in any society on this planet that appreciates weirdos like me.

I’ve never felt as if I belonged in our society. I’m out of place. But do I fit anywhere? I wish I knew. I’m currently limited by my physical disabilities and my PTSD and its side effects. How do I land a job where I’ll have time on transit around people who will likely make my anxiety skyrocket? Then there’s the thought of a remote job… and then we have my ADD and… SQUIRREL!!!

You get the idea.

I also feel like I’m trying to explain who I am and what I need to the world and no one is listening to each word. Like back when my dad would tell my sister something about me and she’d only here “Amanda…. Wants this….” and then I’d get an email berating me for trying to get dad to buy it for me, which I wasn’t. As if my own words don’t count. My experiences don’t count. That my life, somehow, doesn’t count. I know it does. But that feeling of invisibility returns hardcore.

~A