December 18, 2011
I was asked to participate in COTS 2012 (April) as one of the many successful individuals and families that launched back into the mainstream of life. Well, it wasn't all that easy as I thought to get back in the mainstream of life again....I was a street person/homeless for six years in Santa Rosa until my egotistical pride let go and I decided to make a real change and came to MIC (Mary Isaak Center) in June '06. I wasn't there for drug and/or alchohol reasons but that I just needed to learn to get out of my own way. I had some killer jobs and responsibiities before this time and I even was confident I was making the success happen in my life. I even lived at the same residence as a renter for 16 1/2 years. I must have been doing something right. Then my world came apart. I came home from work one day to find a 30 day eviction notice. Everybody in the complex got one. The owner had sold the property and the new owner wanted us out by Thanksgiving so they could build a shopping center in that location. At least I had a job... so I thought. I got laid off 4 days later. I couldn't find work and housing etc. and I wasn't elegible for unemployment insurance payments yet. So I had to put my stuff in storage and then I hit the streets. Later on I lost the unit and my stuff anyway due to the fact I couldn't pay the rental fee no more. So much for my past life that I knew. Funny, they didn't teach us in school how to be shelterless LOL. I burned out some great friends because of my neediness and my lack of progress and so I increasingly became depressed and lost hope. Cots restored me and I'm a better person in so many ways. I've got lots of great friends again, live in my own apartment again, I got a gym membership again also and was able to reinvent myself :) I've been a hero to a lot of my friends now and they are more than willing to help me when needed. One friend even sold me a great little car he had extra and real cheap for $600, worth way more, just because he just wanted to help me. Sweet. My three years at MIC has been a blessing for me. I lost about a decade of my life dealing with the homeless stuff. Really, those weren't lost years, just different. Check out the COTS 2012 calendar, I'm "Mr. April". Notice that smile of mine and those of others in there, they are real and so are the people behind them. God Bless and thanks to all those who "suffered through" my stubbornness at MIC and gave me a hand up, not a handout. A big special thanks to all the many gracious donors, volunteers and the citizens of Petaluma which I now reside. The views expressed here does not necessarlly represent MIC, it's staff or it's clients. LOL
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MY ROLE:Client Served