17 July 2006

I'm having one of those "fading fast" days-I'm not feeling very hopeful of anything right now and I'm scared to count what blessings I have left because it seems lately that whenever I do count them, they are smashed.

Tomorrow I will go to work and wait to hear that I am not going to have enough money for the apartment I found that is about $150 more than I wanted to spend, but is clean and safe.

Then I will have to go looking into the less clean and safe places out there, and hope I can get in with my dog.

When I came up to Atlanta, my son was going to take the dog, and my new roommate was going to let me stay for a couple of months without charging me rent so that I could get on my feet and after staying a few more months, move to my own place.

I got here with the dog-Fox refused to even help me move out of the storage facility and he didn't want to hear about the dog.

And Roomie wanted MONEY-NOW or I had to get out; he likes to use the phrase "I can't afford you-get out" in notes shoved under my door when I ask for a break so that I can pay a bill!

I had no-where to go, and no-one who cared about me to turn to; I gave Roomie every penny, even the ones from the piggy bank I'd started for my grandson in hopes that one day I would see him again.

I didn't have that many bills, and the amounts are small, but thanks to the roommate scaring the hell out of me, the bills got behind. I'd catch them up, he insist I owed him more, the bills would fall behind again. Then he would humiliate me in front of his guests (by telling them how much money I owed him and how tired he was of all the bill collectors calling for me) as I was coming in or going out. I got to where I stayed in the room I was paying $400.00-750.00 a month for, coming out to use the bathroom, walk the dog, or go to work.

The dog is 12 years old, and has been with us since he was eight weeks old when we rescued him out of a Guatemala City, Guatemala pet store.

Of course, he is really Crusty and Fox's dog-I always end up cleaning up their messes.

So, since 1998, when Crusty decamped with all the money, the car, the furniture, and held me back at gun point when I begged for some food and money as he was cleaning out the freezer, and Fox started 'acting out' his hurt and anger, I was stuck with two dogs amoung other things-Crusty and Fox's messes.

One dog was mine, and he died in 2000 on Valentine's Day of old age/canine dementia-doggy alzheimer. He didn't recognize me, and was suffering terribly; the vet put him down and I cried for days at the way the dog's last days had been so awful.

Gator is in full control of his faculties at the ripe age of 12, but is living this horrid life-my room is about 10x10, faces the car park with a sliding glass door that invites the freezing cold and now the burning heat in-the room is always uncomfortable.

He is not allowed out of the room except to run quickly through the apartment to go down the steep flight of stairs where he is urged to quietly and quickly relieve himself and then struggle back up the stairs so no-one from the office sees him. The management knows we are here, but not officially, so we have to keep a low profile. The dog can't sit in the sunshine, go for walks, or even look out the window. He can't beg at the dinner table or the kitchen sink, because he is not allowed out there-and if he could, I'm not sure I'd let him anyway.

The kitchen is so unsanitary that after any food I stupidly bought several times was consumed by anyone but me, I decided it was a blessing in disguise because the kitchen is always nasty. I love my dog, I don't want him exposed to the filth or Roomie's yelling.

I tried to get the local Boxer Rescue society to take him-they never called back or returned my emails. I kept trying to get Fox to take him. I tried to find him a home in several dozen places and ways.

Now, I've found a nice, clean, safe place where both of us are welcome-for a price. A rather steep price.

And I'm a week late on my car payment.

And Roomie is (a speed freak-ephedrine-I've discovered, no wonder he foams at the month, forgets what he says ten minutes prior, and is generally all around scary as hell) going to try to force me into a homeless shelter in eleven days if I don't find a place and get out.

Gee, what do I have to be worried about?

It is hard to find my optimism; I am completely alone, life has not been all that hopefilled the past eight years, and the aloneness is finally just too damn much.

I used to talk to myself-positive self talk from cognitive behavioural therapy I've read about. But the neighbours looked at me as though I was the neighbourhood loon and encouraged their kids to lurk under the window and listen to me. That happened to me in Dothan, and the scars are still there.

I need to hear good things, positive things, I need to hear human voices telling me they are my friend by helping me to brainstorm my way out of this nightmare!


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