Apr 272014
 

Adjusting to Tacoma Park, Maryland is like adjusting to homelessness in a way: adjusting to a radically different culture, heavily Spanish, with virtually now English spoken in this neighborhood. Of course, this is an imaginative exercise, since I am no longer homeless.

You can experience culture shock, stuck in a motel for a few days, till your money runs out. You can feel paralyzed for a while, afraid to go ou…but the face on TV is generally phony and superficial. After a while you do step out the door and if you have your wits and adaptive skills about you, you realize that you do need some exercise so you walk downtown, at first afraid but most everyone is polite and unthreatening, You still have a little money so you go to a fast food restaurant and order from the follow menu. Then you walk down one of the main streets, just exploring, not thinking about where you might end up in a few days. If you project too much, you may find yourself paralyzed again. go out, but the fare on TV is generally phony and superficial. After a while you do step out the door, and if you do have your wits and adaptive skills about you…
You realize that you do need some exercise, so you walk downtown, at first afraid, but slowly realize that most everyone is polite and untheatening. You still have a little money in your pocket, so you go to a fast food restaraunt and order from the dollar menu. Then you walk down one of the main streets, just exploring, not thinking yet about where you might end up in a few days. If you project too much, you may find your self paralyzed emotionally again. (To be continued)

 

You find a barber who gives a cheap haircut. It’s not cool to let your appearance deteriorate too much. You stay aware of your immediate surroundings to avoid any mugging. If you happen to be a writer, you, bring a pad and pen and with you to write. You may fall into old patterns like talking on the street, even though you are now taking mental medicine…

 

You realize now that you can negotiate your immediate surroundings on foot. There will be muggers in any city though; you must be aware. You come across a sign for a program that might be for the homeless. You head back to the motel to look up homeless resources. You forget your loneliness for now…

 

One recognition that some homeless or pre-homeless individuals must come to in order to change what is ultimately a destructive life pattern:

 

You must coming to realize that a stable life style is needed in order to function normally in our society, and that residential, occupational, relational, geographical stability does not mean a loss of creativity or “selling out” to corruption and selfishness in our cultural milieu.

 

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