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Homeless at 11

February 6, 2017

As my loyal reader, which would be me, already know that I am now working as a Crisis Counselor on a Suicide Crisis Hotline. Though rewarding, it is often stressful but has its rewards.

Today my last call will be with me a long time. It has been very busy for the past few weeks, there are so many hurting people on the USA and Canada, more than I ever imagined! I have handled over 1,700 calls myself in the first 4 months and 1 week.

I often wonder what it will take to fix the broken Mental Health system in the USA. It is appalling to me that athletes and coaches make millions while so many suffer. If I could answer the question, where are our priorities, perhaps I would have enough money to fix the system. Communities, Churches and local Governments have failed these people and the Federal Government could care less, it costs too much.

I left work the last two mornings with tears in my eyes and a lump in my throat. Yesterday as I ended my overnight 10 hour shift a young lady in her late 20’s weighed heavy on my mind. I will call her Alice (not her real name), tired, suicidal, an abuse survivor and trying hard early in the morning  to decide if life was still the answer. Unable to sleep for days at a time  because of night terrors, but still reaching out for help. I know she said she would call back, but she didn’t. I can only hope and pray she held on as she promised. But she did have a plan to end her life, so I will just hope that she found that hope.

Then this morning, my last call came in late in the morning. Carol, (not her real name), in her early 20’s tore my heart out. Maybe it is because that is the age of my youngest daughter, maybe it is just because I care. But she tore my heart out as she told me her story. An alcoholic that blacked out in her motel room last night, broke, out of luck , out of hope and a pint in her hand that would be today’s breakfast. Her phone stolen, her spirit broken informed me she would be homeless at 11:00 and that may be the last straw. She was still fighting for life and a reason to live. Thirty nine minutes later I was able to convince her to carry on. Two potential shelters and rehab programs phone numbers were provided to her. With a glimmer of hope Carol promised to call these programs. She also promised to call back before she would end her life. She is a fighter, she won my heart!

I drove home with tears in my eyes and a new Hope that she will get the help she so desperately needs and longs for. It is the Carol’s and the Alice’s that I admire. They are not playing for Super Bowl rings, just a chance. They are fighting the odds, the abuse, the addictions, the poverty, in hope of a brighter day. In spite of the pain, they get up and try another day. They will never know how much they inspire me, the one that should be inspiring them

Reach out and help someone today. Visit the lonely, the sick, the elderly, the hopeless. Make a difference.

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