by Mollie Misti
The best and worst side of humanity. Can be seen and felt. Best from the streets. You won’t find more truth then here. What we are made of and what we are not.
Like most, I began my journey, into homelessness losing everything (health, job, sanity, home, friends and family). One compounding on the other.
It is like a rollercoaster ride, one that is constantly peaking and dropping. Never able to see the end of it all. I watched, from the sidelines, life slipping away, from ever angle. It is like standing between two mirrors, seeing only me and all eternity. Its endlessness…
I watched all I had known drop to the wayside. All I had built, drop to the wayside. All I had invited in, drop to the wayside. All my hope, drop to the wayside. It could not be stopped or helped. It was destinedm and I could no longer be a bystander in my life ever again. If not me, then who. The answer is (no one).
I have spent my whole life caring for the needs of many, a friend, family, and even foe. I always felt honored to be asked in and take part, but it was never my life. Until I lost it all, I never realized that I never had a thing. I was nothing. Nothing for me and everything for everyone else.
So, I took care of all I could and stepped out off the radar. Scared shitless. Never stronger. Without care, thought. Hopeless in all things, you, and me. But still fighting. All the same. For life, me, and rooting for you.
From time to time. I lament, all I have lost. But then one of you comes across me in the misted heartbreak, most calling it (shame).
You lift me up. In ways, I never dare dream. There are people in the world. And they really do care. They see a me. A me I think, I see to.
It is hard to hold hope. Close to one’s heart. In a world that seems so hard, dark. Then someone comes along. With a kind word or their story. Sharing, given me a little piece of their hope. So I can hold tight. One more day. One more night.
I guess, in the end. When I felt all hope was lost. I forgot to take into account. A shared loss we all feel and all take account. No matter where we are in life and although we may never meet, I can now feel you (as side by side) in spirit. This is the hope given me and I am glad. You hold, me in your keep.
Thank you, for sharing just how much you care. It gives me strength. As my journey has been long. Hope in a tomorrow, I once thought far and out of sight..
Now I come the Covid-19 pandemic and how it is effecting us all. Those without homes are being hardest hit. Not by the virus but by the state lockdown. Governor Ducey’s made his thought very clear about those without homes and how he wanted the State of Arizona’s City’s, Towns, and Counties to proceed. When it comes to the homeless population (over 6000 according to Maricopa Association’s Of Governments).
Here is what his “shelter in place” order has to say “8. Individuals experiencing homelessness are exempt from this directive, but are strongly urged to obtain shelter as soon as possible and to the maximum extent practicable.”
The problem with this order, as I see it is: if business have closed, and or shut down inside services (where do we go)? If the library is closed (where do we go)? If fast food and or convenient store’s stop giving free access to water, and have closed their bathrooms (where do we go)? If parks and all places to shelter are cut off (where do we go)? If all showers, clothing banks, and foodservice, from volunteer ran organizations have to comply with closure (where are we to go)?
My City said they would not forget about us. That we would have access to park grass, drinking fountains, bathrooms, we would not be harrassed by their police officers, and yet this not the case most of us are experiencing. If you look homeless you be asked to leave the parks. Same as it always is. Or DNR’ed (Do not return) all together. We are harrassed at bus stops. Asked to move on from all neighborhoods. Made to feel unwanted. Or shamed for be in view.
There are over 6000 people, here in the valley, that are without a home. And that number really is siding on the minimum. We are more. Out of that number 64% are without a home for over 2 years. Maricopa county has 61% of the states homeless population. According to Phoenix rescue Mission over 4000 are sheltered at any given time. This is a high number. The shelter I utilize in my city, at the beginning of the pandemic, was about 40. We are now down to half that. With most going back to the streets.
Here is where our city’s, town’s, and counties have have made sure we are covered. It has been through you. The general public, men and women (confined to your home) have come out in numbers. With masks worn by all. Offer water, food, a strong “how are you”, “why are you here “, with a “what can I do”? How can I best help you? While you are forced to be in main view.
It has been our community. The one that we chose. We chose you. You see us cry.
submitted by Mollie Misti – Her Struggle is Real! She is the epitomy of a StreetLight!
If you would like to make a direct donation to Mollie please send a message to StreetLights@TheStreetFairy.com with Donate to Mollie in the subject line and I will find a way to get any donations to her directly.