I had been homeless for about six months when I called my mother from my deceased grandmother’s house. I had a key from when I lived with her. Mom, her usually fretting self, immediately went into action. She turned on the heat and made me a bed. “You’re not going to be homeless,” she told me. My father wasn’t too pleased, but what could he do? Cast his son aside despite all his faults and drunkenness?
I had planned on going to Nashville to live. From reading “The Homeless Guy” I knew I could get a place to sleep, three meals a day, and social worker help. I would also have my full disability allotment to drink with. I wouldn’t have any expenses other than cigarettes and beer. It was sad, though, that my life had come to this. To spend the rest of my days sleeping and eating in homeless shelters while getting drunk during the day. I had two choices; to be put under my father’s harsh regime and live a semi normal life, or move to Nashville and probably die of cirrhosis in a few years.
I chose the former. I realize dad can be harsh. It is only because he cares. I was unable to care for myself and he took over. Many fathers would say to hell with that; he’s a grown man. Let him fend for himself. I was like a small child who needed care and guidance. I always was and still am to a certain point.
When I write about dad and our interactions, you are only seeing my point of view. You are not reading his. I realize I can put him in a not so flattering light and I apologize for this. He’s a good man; a responsible man. He has had to deal with two very mentally ill family members and do what he sees is best. Despite our semi-frequent squabbles with dad, mom and I have good lives. I have Maggie which brings me no end of joy. I have an EXTREMELY nice computer setup and the Internet is my life. I lack for nothing except money. I have some of the first friends in years in George and Mrs. Florene.
I do believe trust will come with time. It might take years, but those are years I would never have if I had chosen life in Nashville and drank myself to death. Here, I have a fighting chance with sobriety. I have a good life here. Yes, it is easy to lament what you don’t have, but that is human nature. With dad’s help maybe one day I can be independent.