Updated: Jan 31, 2021
One of the UMATT3R intentions is to start to shift the story about who and what is "homelessness."
The Tales From The Root series is to probe us into a deeper dialogue about the causes, not the symptoms.
Meet Beautiful. Yes, that's her real name. Her sister's name is Miracle, and I'll save that for another time. This is her vision, this is how she is turning homeless to hope.
"I’ve been homeless on and off most of my life especially growing up. It started because my Dad was kicked out of his house by his Dad at gun point at 5 years old. He then lived in a car at the very far end of the “salvage yard” my Grandpa had in Omaha, NE. Really, it was old cars my Grandpa would buy “to fix and sell” but eventually became something to collect over the years. Needless to say, as long as my Grandpa didn’t find out they provided the shelter my Dad had to survive throughout his life. Well, as often happens, that led to a life of uneducated choices riddled with addiction, more abuse both self imposed and then towards others, and toxic relationships. I then ended up on a somewhat similar path only tried to do somewhat better by working hard to graduate high school and eventually went to college.
Over the years I met men and had my own toxic relationships filled with the same or similar addictions, bad choices, eating disorders, physical self harm, and other toxic situations or job opportunities that only led to more of the same homelessness and disappointments.
Over the years as I had children I made a lot of mistakes and bad decisions but people were somehow brought in my path to help direct me to a better way. Stephen is one of those people that I am grateful for today and am forever blessed to consider not only an inspiration but also one of my closest friends whom I consider more like family.
Ever since I was little I had had the desire to help others and do whatever I can to do what I would want done in a situation with the thought that, “This could be my child, mother, brother, or even best friend so what would I want done to them?”
Something that stands out to me from my childhood is until I was probably 10 years old or so I had never had my own blanket, pillow, or bed to sleep on. One Christmas someone decided to “adopt us” and Christmas Eve about midnight (or so it seemed anyway) we heard a knock on the front door. My Mom got up to see who could possibly be knocking on the door “at this ungodly hour” only to discover each one of my sisters and brothers and I had a blanket and pillow waiting for us by the front door with no one in sight.
To this day blankets and pillows are my source of “security” for in my very own bed I often have the best memories made with my children laughing, watching movies, and eating whatever we want with our own soft, cuddly blankets, and pillows. One day I hope every one has the chance to have their own bed complete with whatever bedding that pleases them."
(c) UMATT3R INC. 2021