Homeless Experience: Woman Describes Typical Day in Homelessness

No alarm in the summer is needed. The heat from the sun, wakes you up with the same sticky sweat from the night before. 3 AM. it’s finally cool enough to sleep. 5:15 AM the sun starts the heat for the day, creating the same blistering heat we had the previous day. It’s way too early for this. It’s going to be a long and hot summer.

I get up and take Faith out. Back inside to feed Little Bit. The new mouth to feed, the homeless friend but with 4 legs. She’s been some great comic relief. A vet will need to be found. The local humane association and animal control might be able to help. There’s a connection now. She has a name. Although we don’t know how she got here, the important thing is she’s here and safe. Her background doesn’t really matter before she arrived. All that matters is she’s here. The same with the homeless people you meet. It doesn’t matter their background or how they got there. What matters is they’re homeless.

The day starts with waiting for Pastor to arrive so I can access the church for coffee and some much-needed charging. Summer is here and cooling off is needed frequently. I take my Chromebook with me and type out some thoughts running through my head. I cool off and it’s a huge sigh of relief. The fog is lifting in my head and clear thoughts starts coming.

Welcome back brain, I’ve missed you.

Pulling into a campground that offers a handicapped bathhouse is a huge treat. Since my stroke, this is a must. Therapy is on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Wednesday bi-weekly is New Paper release. I stay pretty busy with Doctors appointments, SS advocate appointments, writing and volunteering at the church, as well as selling the paper. Finding food banks or hot meals is challenging and finding foods that don’t require refrigeration is necessary. I’m not able to use the church facilities from Sunday noon until Tuesday morning so, planning keeps the inconvenience down to a minimum. Paul said something once that just stuck with me. He said, “Homelessness is making the best out of a bad situation.”

Being Type 2 diabetic plays a very small roll in what I eat on any given day. If I can afford it, I’ll buy fresh fruits; if I can’t then I rely on what people give me.

Yes, that’s just awful but when you’re hungry it doesn’t matter what you’ve been given. Food is food. For me health has always been on the back burner. Too many other things are needed. I can’t be selfish … not now … maybe later.

In the afternoon, I’m mostly plated in front of my battery-operated fan creating my own breeze in the mostly stagnate air with thick humidity hanging in the air. At night, I just lay there only able to grab a few hours of sleep, more than likely from pure exhaustion. Thoughts of what will be needed for the next couple of days creep in my thoughts and keep me awake a little longer. When I can get to a park the first day is filled with sleep. Catching up what sleep was lost since the last time.

Vicky Batcher

Vicky Batcher


Vicky Batcher is a writer and a vendor for The Contributor street paper out of Nashville, TN. Shes 56 a mother of twin boys and resides in a questionable RV. She's been homeless for 7 years.

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