To say that I was totally engulfed in my situation is an understatement, those first few days whilst still in shock and denial, I walked around with a severely optimistic view that this really wasn’t happening and I’ll just wake up.
I’d started a new job the day after the repossession and to look at me smartly dressed, hair done make-up in place no one would ever realise that I was homeless, you wear a mask whilst depressed I’d adopted a shroud of “this is not really happening” of course the only person I was fooling was me, amazing what the human mind can deny!!.
As I said a friend had put me up in a hotel for a couple of days, but come the Saturday, reality would come back into sharp focus, I had nowhere to stay from that point, a very good friend of mine(or so I thought) was supposed to send me some money so that I could either stay with them for an unspecified time or get a room in a guest house, after many phone calls I couldn’t get a response I had around £17.00 to my name, and certainly not enough to pay for any accommodation.
As the day wore on the phone calls became more and more desperate and shrill as I publicly screamed a message into the phone with Saturday shoppers watching, I just couldn’t understand why he wasn’t available to take my calls which we had agreed upon and(the rest of this comes under another letter) I spent precious money on phone credit, so not only worrying about where to stay, but also concerned with what I was going to eat, not that I had any appetite, but like normal people I was used to having a meal in the evening, prepared and cooked by me in my kitchen, or what used to be my kitchen!
I was embarrassed and hadn’t told any other friends even when they’d seen me in the town I just pretended all was ok, I mean how can you tell friends something like that, for one I couldn’t stand their pity secondly I felt it seem like I was begging if I asked for help, putting them on the spot as it were.
This was one of the worst aspects of keeping this a secret, when your used to being viewed in a certain way, to strip yourself bare and have friends see you as you are now “desperate” is untenable and the shroud must be kept in place, now saying that I realise that I had little faith in what I thought their reactions would, therefore depriving them of a chance to help me if they wanted, my pride would not allow for the pretence to become something real.
In that I’m my own worst enemy that way and I still couldn’t accept what had happened to my life in a few short days, I used to walk past the homeless and think “thank god that’s not me” and every now and then drop a few pence into a cup or buy tea o coffee for those who I’d see regularly around the town, and now the terrifying thought manifested I’d now be one of them.
I was breaking down at a rate of knots by the time the weekend was over, I did manage to go to work and someone had taken pity on me and said I could stay with them for a few week, this person wasn’t in my circle of friends, so I was safe and had made up some story about repairs being made to my home and needed somewhere to stay, this was another whip of the lash because my situation had now made me a liar, but I honestly thought in a few weeks I have things sorted out I’d buy them a gift say thank and move on.
I think I worked for another week or so and the job ended abruptly, so there it was not much in the bank, nowhere to live, I eked out the story about repairs to my home to give me more time but like everything else lately time had run out and my options grew evermore narrow and my mind closing in on itself.
By the end of September I’d be completely engulfed with depression, humiliation, self loathing, isolation, friendless, homeless.