Life from both sides…


It’s another glorious fall morning in the heartland… cool temps, sunshine, the sounds of commerce humming along. Our first frost is apparently due next week, but benevolent nights would be a grace as far into the season as possible, as we currently have what I can only call a “situation.”

A few of us have been aware for a while of a night-sleeper in our parking lot, only gradually gathering details and pertinent facts. What’s been gleaned: Her pronouns are she/her and she’s possibly elderly. I’ve not encountered her up close and personal yet, but from my 4th-floor windows she resembles a mummy. She may be suffering from narcolepsy, causing her to drop in her tracks and sleep it off regardless of surroundings or conditions. Alcohol or drugs will do the same thing, of course, but who’s to say. Sometimes, sleeping on the raw pavement, she’s wrapped in a blanket, sometimes more exposed to the elements, but her situation always appears haphazard and dire. Our building guy has found her lying in the middle of driveways… stretched out across parking spaces… sprawled in the bank drive-through… and he always tries to urge her out of harm’s way, with little success. It feels like only a matter of time before someone fails to see her in the predawn gloom, or mistakes her for a discarded remnant, or the weather takes over… but you can’t force anyone to accept unwanted help. Lawrence has a homeless population of somewhere around 400, a certain percentage of whom won’t set foot inside a building of any kind lest they feel trapped, possibly tricked into losing their independence for something they didn’t want. I think the shelters have been running full… there are also tent communities here and there… and some people sleep rough every night, weather be damned, in any sheltered spot they can find.

This solitary stick of a woman must feel a safe vibe on our block and I’d like that to be true as she’s either a phantom or a visiting angel. Twice I’ve spotted her shrouded unmoving outline from my window, put my shoes on, grabbed a few resources for her… and when I checked again she was gone. The stock photo above? Imagine no shoes, no cardboard, and everything too road-worn and dirty for words. Neither you nor I can see ourselves in this situation… but I’m guessing neither could our lone camper nor her mama.

Blessed be…



2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. gandydancergirl
    Oct 14, 2022 @ 13:01:09

    Nobody expects to grow up to be homeless, yet there she is. Poor soul. Bless you for trying to help.

    Sent via the Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G, an AT&T 5G smartphone Get Outlook for Android ________________________________

    Liked by 1 person


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