The Face of the Shelter

Anyone can be homeless.

As some (or all of you, if you’ve been paying attention!) know, Children #’s 2, 3, 4, and I are currently residing in a homeless shelter.  It isn’t bad.  It’s not ideal, of course, but at least we have our own room and bathroom.  There is a kitchen that we share with several other rooms. 

Coming here, I had no idea what to expect.  I have, in fact, never before been homeless.  It is not a situation in which I ever dreamed I’d be. I feel like such a failure. It is a completely humbling experience to have to rely on others for help. I’m usually so proud to be independent. I just couldn’t this time. I had fallen too far.

So, dealing with Child #3’s mental health issues while in the shelter are a challenge. The kiddos are bored, not sleeping well, and wanting a home of our own. I know. I want that too. It just takes time.

So, when Child #3 throws a fit and wants to play in traffic, I have to be right on the heels and trying to convince them that they are loved and wanted. Yeah. Nothing says that like life in a shelter! 😔.

Mental illness is no joke.

I’m doing my best, filling out applications for apartments and doing offered programs to help our chances, but so far, nothing. It’s beyond frustrating.

There are good times, of course! Cooking together, even in a shared kitchen, can be lots of fun. Watching movies together (Friday Family Movie Night is still going strong!) and sewing or doing crosswords together (just the easy ones, please!) are great memory makers.


Child #4 and I joined the gardening club and are having a blast picking fresh veggies (eating and cooking with them!) There’s nothing like a fresh-picked tomato or green bean! Yummy!

Our cooking has definitely been taking advantage of all the fresh produce. Tonight I made stuffed zucchini again (so yummy!) and tomorrow pork stir-fry is on the menu. So darn tasty!

That’s all for now. I hope you enjoyed this little update. Please pray for our family! God bless you!


Published by Rita

I am a single mother, a Christian, a writer, an abuse survivor, a reader, and a friend. I've wanted to be a writer my entire life and now here I am!

2 thoughts on “The Face of the Shelter

  1. Hang in! Both my daughter and I have been in tight spots. It gets better.

    In the meanwhile, take advantage of the camaraderie and the sense of community you currently have to be able to lean into your healing! The universe always shifts the cogs of time and space, when the time is right! The current spaces we are in are there for a reason, to help us on our journeys. There is no good or bad, there are just opportunities for learning and for growth.

    Thought du jour: are there opportunities for you to speak about your experiences in your community? Your experiences not only with domestic violence but helping kiddos with special needs fit a small niche, and I’m sure there are people who need to hear your story. You are currently advocating for your kids in an environment which needs more funding for mental health and support services. I’m sure there are people who need to hear not only how you are being helped under the current fiscal allocations to your community’s resources, but for them to hear where your needs (and others like you) are falling through the cracks.


  2. Absolutely! I definitely want to help people, especially those who are in situations similar to mine. There is a domestic violence business for which I would love to speak. Since life is in such flex, I haven’t volunteered yet, but it’s on my list. As for the special needs kiddos, I’m just finding my way, one kid at a time. It took me quite a while to figure out some things and I’m still such a work in progress! I’ll persevere, though! Anything for my kids!


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