The graveyard shift started out okay but my boss, bless his soul, was a good, kind man but he was getting on my case again. I was working at the Vons grocery store in Mission Oaks. My boss said I wasn’t trying hard enough to accomplish my work in a timely manner but it was my boss that was preventing me from getting anything done. This had been going on for quite some time and I was getting tired and fed up with my boss’ constant hounding and harping on me. It was shortly after this that I went on my lunch break with a warning from my boss. His words were: “you don’t care about your job and it’s getting to a point where I don’t know how much longer you will be working here.” I thought to myself: “Good, I’m tired of this place anyways.” I told my boss that I was not coming back to work after my lunch break and that I was finished with working for Vons. That was a grave mistake that I made. I went home after lunch feeling like I was finally free after months of anger, irritation, and misery of working the graveyard shift. Little did I know what my choice would end up costing me in the end.
As I previously stated, I had no idea how much my decision to quit my job would cost me. As the weeks followed, my landlord noticed that I was spending a lot more time at home lately and had begun to wonder why. I had no money, no income, and I was late in paying my rent. At this point in my life, I had started to cease caring about anyone or anything. When my landlord realized that I had quit my job, he kindly asked me to move out. Though I had no money to give my landlord, I made amends with him as best I could. I told him to keep my TV, my Xbox 360 and all the games/game books that I had as recompense for not paying my rent like a responsible adult. The worst six months were to come. After this came to pass, I was homeless. Those people who have never been in such a place have no idea how angry, lost, depressed, and miserable one could become in such a sad, sorry state. Fortunately or unfortunately, I had food stamps so I was at least able to eat most days. There were times that I went hungry, not eating for up to 3 days at a time. In those days I would ask for handouts, anything to get something in my belly no matter what food it was that I could get with what little I had. I spent my nights sleeping in a park near where I formerly worked. An acquaintance of mine’s uncle was also homeless and we shared much company. On lucky nights we would stay in a hotel whereas most of the time we slept on individual cots underneath a tree off of a beaten path in a park. When someone is homeless they lose all sense of hope. Not anyone, not family, not friends, nothing. There is such despair at their plight that they feel no way out of a deep, deep hole that has been placed at their feet by their own hands. The nights were spent drinking cheap beer, sometimes whiskey. On the really cold nights I would drink cheap bourbon. My parents knew of my situation but I didn’t want their help. I had gotten myself into the mess and by God I would get myself out no matter how long it would take.
It was a good day, this day in later summer 2012. My parents were visiting and I knew that it was time for me to swallow my own pride and ask them for their assistance in getting out of the hole I had dug myself in. My parents found the RAIN project phone number and called them. Within a few days to a week I was interviewed for entrance into the RAIN program. I was accepted and I suddenly found a new home to regain that which I had lost in my six months of homelessness. I immediately started applying for work every day for as long as possible. I had gotten turned down mostly, others wanted me to come in for an interview and then I was turned down. Step by step and day by day I regained my hope and confidence in myself that I could be a better man and a more responsible adult. Finally, in April 2013 I landed a job!! The job was a favorite fast food restaurant of mine: Carl’s Jr. I started within the week being trained on making breakfast biscuits, working the dining room, and learning backline production, where the real action takes place. It’s now October and I am finally moving out. I am so very excited about my upcoming road trip to a new town and new state. I will surely miss all the new friends that I made both at work as well as at the RAIN program. This program helps tremendously but you have to do your part.