I have been traveling a lot, trying to use my personal story to help others. I'm typing this on my phone so forgive me in advance .
It's fall now. My kids need me to be home. I need to catch up on carepackages, apply for funding, and just focus on keeping my mind right. I'm not going to lie to kick it, for whatever reason, the winter months give me a wave of depression. My mother really loved the holidays. She would do the whole house with decorations. She had decorative sweaters, decorative jewelry and pins. I have never embraced anything as much as she embraced the holiday season.
Winter as a homeless junkie sucked beyond measure. The SF Bay Area in my specific corridor doesn't really get "seasons" per se. It's more 10 days of heat, dry, cold/foggy, and rain. The rain when you live outside is inescapable. There are only so many sheltered spots in my general area. Those are highly coveted and physically defended. The average person might stay awake on rocks or tweak to avoid laying in a puddle at night. Remember- it isn't JUST a puddle. It's a combo of the oil and piss runoff that has accumulated in the dry season. The shelters were whack- curfew by sevenish only to be kicked out in the early early morning. That's if they aren't full.
I'm old now. I'm an old retired junkie. But I can clearly remember shivering in the cold rain, unable to accumulate enough money for a fix. No place to sit, no place to stay, no prospects. Those memories keep me sober but they also make me insane. I left that life and three people took my place. The water wheel of addiction flows like the dope on the streets.
You are probably alone reading this. I'm alone too. Alone in my hotel at a conference. I'm trying to learn about new ways to help people that use drugs, people like us. We deserve help. We deserve to be safe. We deserve love.
Be safe my friends. I'll get a story to you when I return.