catching a break

Twice in the past year I have been quite suddenly kicked out of where I was living. The first time was due to a failed engagement. That is a story for another day.

This time it was due to my roommate taking her never-ending anger out on me after a spat with her teenage daughter as I walked in the front door. Within seconds I was being berated by this ~50 year old woman (with the emotional capacity of a 6 year old). I bet you’re curious how she focused that on me. Even if you’re not, I need to get it out.

Let me paint a picture of the environment I was in for the past 8 months. After being left for a teenager, I was kicked out of a home that I had helped to purchase. In desperation, I found a great deal on a room for rent in a location close to my job and my college. Upon meeting this woman, she dumped her entire divorce story on me within minutes. (Red flag number one; take note, kids.) I had three days left to be out of the house I was in. I thought “how bad could this be? I am already at rock bottom.” The night I moved in, I discovered that the restroom had no door. No, not even a makeshift one. Immediately, I put up a shower rod and curtain since I was sharing the basement with her son (my age) that openly showed attraction to me. (Until I expressed my extreme lack of interest.) My bedroom doorknob had a smear of dried blood on it (red flag two, red flag two!) and the room itself had a giant hole in the ceiling. I thought I would only be there for a month or so. I grew attached to her teenage daughter and felt so sorry for her being treated so badly by her mother. After a while, I became too dependent on living there. The frequency of screaming tantrums and each person in the house on a different sleep schedule created a negative vortex that I hadn’t noticed before. If I was happy enough to be energetic and singing, I still couldn’t stay out of the drama. The basement was filthy, the shower moldy. The owner of the house kept delaying printing a rental agreement (red flag three) and I allowed it in the hopes that I could bail at any time if things got bad. She allowed her friend to move in (without asking her children or paying roommate) while her friend went through rehab for meth. Until a checkbook and some items went missing.

You know, I could go on forever with the insane events I witnessed under that roof. I am too exhausted. I’ll bring it up to speed and tell you what began The Fight. Yesterday, I had a potential job interview (currently I’m making $5,000 annually) before my classes for the day. After waking up, I went to the restroom and grabbed my toothbrush. I turned the faucet and, you guessed it, no water. In this day and age you have to go months and months without paying your water bill before service is shut off completely. During the time I was there I saw more and more new things brought home (including a new cable service and internet provider; resulting in a $200 fee to cancel from the previous providers) and I never knew to worry about utilities. It would seem that some households value media over water. When confronted with why my rent money was not helping me have basic things like WATER, she immediately began calling me the worst names you can say to someone. Generally, I can kill people with kindness thanks to past call center jobs. This woman has a complete mental block against social cues and will shout over you after demanding answers. I have only screamed at three people in my life out of anger and boy did she get an earful. That was around 8:00pm. Due to the lack of rental agreements on paper, I was given 48 hours to vacate. Knowing just how extreme this woman is and how petty she is, I didn’t want to stay for one more second. I packed up and left. This morning I went back for my bigger belongings while enduring constant texts in all caps about how stupid and crazy I am. Yes, me. I am the crazy one without good decision making skills.

I’m now living in my grandparent’s beautiful home and I feel very welcome. This house is enormous; I basically have an entire downstairs apartment. If only I could have moved here sooner. My cousin has just recently moved out, freeing up this area.

This brings me to why my title is about catching a break. This abrupt upheaval, while stressful, has brought me to a place that will not suck the happiness from my heart. I will open the door to my loving grandparents and be able to maintain my happiness. It is such a change from the suffocating despair at the last two places I’ve lived. I am finally catching a break on rent, emotional suffering, and fear.

When you hit rock bottom, you can always find a way to fall farther. If you make that choice, you will become the sad woman (or man) who only knows anger. What you can do is remind yourself that you are no longer in that hurtful situation. You are now going to be moving forward and finding your peace. Love and happiness always win no matter how much your sadness denies it. You WILL prevail.

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