Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Saosin Said It Best

I let a homeless man use my shower.

I'm the only person who didn't freak out about it.

My mom wanted a copy of his driver's license. Nat quickly stalked him on Facebook. My dad didn't find out until the next day (I already knew how he'd feel about it).

I saw him while K-Dubs and I were out for our walk. I walked slowly toward the car and asked him if he was living in it. He sad that it was only temporary. That his girlfriend's parents were in town & didn't know that he had been living there. I could smell the BO from where I was standing. This wasn't temporary. I offered him a shower & a sofa bed. He accepted.

I told him that I needed time to clean the shower out and I'd be ready for him in about 10 minutes. He showed up with his own towel and was skeptical that I genuinely wanted nothing in return. When he felt fresh and clean, he drilled me on why I would help him. Did I pity him? Did I want payment?

I told Homeless George that I knew all too well about the things we take for granted. Feeling clean is at the top.

I promised him that there will always be people like me who just want the best for him. People who are willing to help him be his best and to live his best life everyday. His job right now? To seek them out. His job when he's back on his feet? Pay it forward.

Almost 20 years ago, when Nat and I were younger, we slept in a U-Haul truck. We washed in McDonald's bathrooms. We ate a plain bagel as a meal. Because we couldn't afford more. Then, when we were 3/4 of the way to my grandma's house the truck broke down and we were stranded. Until someone offered us a place to stay. This would not be the last time we needed help. This wouldn't be the last time any of us were homeless.

Homeless George opened up to me. His girl is just a friend. His heart belongs to someone back home. His degree has never been useful. His head is clouded with confusion. His spirit is proud.

He said he wants to be independent but he asked to move in with me. He said he wants to get his career in line but he hasn't sent out his resume'. We live 200 yards from the headquarters for a Fortune 500 company and he's never been across the street. He won't ask his parents for money but he's not getting enough to eat.

I bought him some beers, listened to him talk, and then put him to bed. I told him that the sofa was his at night for the next 30 days. I promised him a hot meal at te end of each day and that I'd give his resume' to my mom's recruiter. I'll do whatever I can to help George be independent of me, his parents, and his pride.

Nobody understands why I let him in my home. Its only 600 sq ft and I regularly trip over the dog.

But I've given $20 bills to panhandling veterans. I've given away the food in my hands when my stomach is growling. I've put gas in the tank of a young mother's car. I make blankets for orphaned babies.

I do it because I hope that this one kindness will make them feel less alone.

"You're not alone

There is more to this, I know

You will make it out

You will live to tell"
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  1. Awww. That's so sweet J-Bird. You're such a good person. There is no way I would feel comfortable letting someone move into my house, especially a man, so power to you lady. I hope all works out for George and he gets back on his feet.

  2. Your amazing. So brave and such a good person. You do so much more for strangers than many have done for their own family. Be proud of that.

  3. @CakeBetch: Thanks! I go with my gut a lot. If it feels wrong, I walk away. Things will work out for George when he's ready for them too. Right now he chooses to stand still because he can't decide which way to go.

    @ErinPatrice: Thanks, Chica! I am pretty proud. :)


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