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Rhinehart 07-05-2011 09:30 AM

Death and Rebirth
Lately, I've come to see that the concept of death and rebirth is quite true. Sometimes you have to lose everything to gain everything. I'll warn ya now this is gonna be a long read and it's kinda personal, but I don't mind talking about it because it doesn't bother me anymore. Keep that in mind.

I've never been too proud of myself in my life as I never really accomplished much, couldn't find my own talents, etc. I didn't really think I had anything to begin with. But circumstances lately have shown me otherwise.

I was recently in a rather bad living situation. My mom and I were living with an old friend she'd had since high school. We thought she was a good one, even though she didn't really try perticularly hard to understand or get along with me, we still got along decently, until her brother moved in. Her brother wasn't a perticularly good guy. He'd spent alot of time in prison, in his life, for heroin addiction. He was born with it, as his mother was doing heroin when she was pregnant with him. Nanci and her siblings were all adopted from different families, so Steve (said heroin addict) often caused alot of trouble for the family. But my mom saw this as an oppurtunity for them to patch things up and have a healthy sibling relationship. I'm not sure if Steve had been through rehab lately or not, but he seemed pretty healthy while he was living with us, but his prison background made his personality clash heavily with mine.

I kept to myself, didn't speak unless spoken to and was basically a shut-in, pretending I didn't exist. He took that personally and thought I was plotting against him as, in prison, the quiet type was the one that was most likely to stab you in the back.

Tensions rose between us and built a pretty oppressive atmosphere between us whenever we had to be in the same room together, and as much as I wanted Nanci and Steve to understand my intentions, an oppurtunity never arose, so things just got tougher and tougher.

One day, I was to go to the local mental health office for an interview, to determine who my counsellor was going to be (I'd recently been diagnosed with social phobia, and Nanci and Steve certainly weren't helping to ease my anxhiety). I also have short-term memory problems. Apparently, the day before that, Nanci said she wanted me to wake up between 9 and 10am the next morning and see how useful I could be then. We lived on a farm, and Nanci and Steve did most of the work. Of course, mom helped out alot, too. But I'd forgotten Nanci had asked me to be up early that morning and only focused on getting my phone call from the mental health office that morning, so I stayed in my bed until the phone rang. I was awake, but Nanci didn't know that when she came to check on me, and wouldn't believe me when I said otherwise.

I got my phone call and went out to the kitchen for breakfast, but Nanci started arguing with me about whether or not I'd been asleep when she wanted me to wake up and what have you. I was answering her questions calmly, but Steve took it as an oppurtunity to step in and confront me, accusing me of being rude to his sister. The more I tried to explain I wasn't being rude, the more hostile he got until he threatened to kick my ass a couple times. Eventually, we were yelling at eachother. I remember "Respect my family!", "Respect my mother!", and "I'll **** you up!", "Go ahead! You wouldn't be the first!". At that point, Nanci told him to back off. After the second or third threat had been made. All my mom could do was watch.

We left for the mental health office after that and never went back to that house. It was a little hard to find a new place to live on such short notice, but they managed to set something up. We're living in a small apartment now, reserved for people who are homeless. It's a decent place, though. And we've long since been recieving food cards. Mom can't look for work currently 'cuz she has to have surgery on her neck to fix some nerve damage she has going on. She's lost the strength in her left arm. So, if anyone's gonna find a job, it's gonna have to be me.

I recently finished counselling and have been working with work source to see about finding a job and getting my education going. I'm enrolled as a student at a nearby community college now. GED courses. I'm planning to go into psychology as my major, though. Not quite sure where I'm going to go for that. But I'm brimming with confidence. The afforementioned events, and everything that's happened since, has given me a sense of awakening, or death and rebirth. I've discovered talents I didn't know I had. I can even talk to people as if I didn't have social phobia. Maybe I don't even have it anymore. But moreover, I have a gift for understanding people, and helping them and my goal is to make a career out of that. I'm going to be starting voulenteer work at a local TV station and take their courses in camera operation and video editing on the side, as I already have talent and experience with that as well (as my YouTube channel will attest).

So, yeah. Despite what I've been through lately (and, frankly, I've been through worse), I have no regrets. I feel no pain. Because I'm proud of the person I've become. And I'm looking forward to see the man that I become.

Aimee 07-05-2011 09:39 AM

Despite all the shit you've been through, you've come out of it so positive and I really admire you for that. I hope things continue to improve with your living situation and with your mom, as well as it has for your personal issues.
You really should be proud, good luck with everything from now on.

Veggi 07-05-2011 09:44 AM

What a powerful story. I wish you the best.

Rhinehart 07-05-2011 03:07 PM


Originally Posted by Aimee (Post 1563504)
Despite all the shit you've been through, you've come out of it so positive and I really admire you for that. I hope things continue to improve with your living situation and with your mom, as well as it has for your personal issues.
You really should be proud, good luck with everything from now on.

Yeah, to be honest, I've been really pessimistic for a long time. There's probably also been a problem of motivation, but I'm certainly motivated these days.

It's been a long struggle to find myself, but now I know who I am, what I'm capable of, what I want to do and now I'm just working on how I'm going to do it. I still haven't decided on my minor yet, but I plan to get into philosophy and I'm seriously considering political science for my social science category. Psychology has alot of requirements (law, social science, arts, statistics, etc.) and the one I'll probably struggle with the most is statistics. Math, bleh. But I feel confident that I can learn it. One step at a time.

And to Veggi, thanks for your kind words and the rep.

Aimee 07-05-2011 03:14 PM

With the attitude you have now, I have no doubt that you'll end up doing the thing that you want to do, no matter how you get there or what it is. Keep going for it no matter what.

Rhinehart 07-07-2011 08:36 AM

I just wanted to point out that if anyone's interested in keeping up with me, I've finally started posting to my blog here. Now that I've actually got something to blog about and all. Not that you have to check it out, just thought I'd point it out.

Lala 07-07-2011 04:55 PM

Wow. What a great story. It's actually quite inspiring that after all you've been through that you have a good outlook on life. And, I personally, think you handled things the best you could with Steve. And that's great that you found something that you're good at, enjoy and can make a living off of.

I'm happy for you! And I wish you lots of luck in everything. :py05:

Rhinehart 07-25-2011 08:37 AM

Okay, I'm gonna have to bump this thread with a pretty big update 'cuz important stuff has recently happened regarding all this.

First off, I'd been withholding some information 'cuz I didn't really want to get any sympathy (I'm not that kinda guy and all), and some of you might've already suspected this, but after we left Nanci's house, we were eventually put into something of a homeless shelter. It was really just an apartment complex that DO have paying tenants, but certain apartments are available for people who would otherwise have been homeless, but you can only stay there for 90 days. Those 90 days are up today and we'd only recently gotten onto the waiting list to get into transitional housing in Longview. In the meantime, we would've had to have gone to the homeless shelter in Longview, which doesn't allow people to hang out in there during the day. You can only come in at night to sleep and that's it. You've gotta spend your days somewhere else. That's no big deal to me, since I'm in school four days of the week, but mom wouldn't really have much of anything to do and neither one of us have any income yet.

However, there is some good news. The Kelso CSO office finally got back to her on her cash benefits (medical benefits, which she also applied for are still mysteriously missing from the letter), so those will likely be starting up soon next month.

But there's even better news. And this is one none of you might've seen coming. Nanci had gotten back in touch with mom through emails toward the end of last week and as it turns out, she's living alone there now. Steve's gone and Tryllian's (her youngest daughter, which I'm not sure I mentioned before) over at her dad's. Nanci invited us to come live with her again. So yesterday, we did some laundry over there, today we're going to be moving our stuff back in, but we did A LOT of talking yesterday.

We all came to look at the incident with Steve a little differently on returning, 'cuz Nanci had pointed out that sometimes men have to have a "biggest **** contest", as she put it and it was the first time in my life I'd ever raised my voice that high or stood up for myself in that way. It was a huge developmental step forward for me and honestly, I don't really have anything against him anymore. Really, I just owe him for kick-starting all of these revelations I've been having since then. But I don't think I could have come quite as far as I have lately if I had still been living in that house all this time. So it seems things went exactly the way they were supposed to, from beginning to end.

Steve seems to be a little worse off, but he's really just back in the situation he's more comfortable being in. Trying times. He's not really used to "normal life", after having been in and out of prison so long. Now he's back with his little druggie friends and such in California. But Nanci knew mom wouldn't come back to the house as long as he was still home, either, so that's just how it goes.

Anyhow, I'm back in school and I've gotta get to class in an hour, but I figured I'd give ya the big update. We're not homeless, yay! And lately, I've come to realize I'm more independant than I ever thought I would be. Despite the fact I'm living with my mom and her friend, I've always been on my own emotionally, taking care of myself and working out my own problems. And with her current condition (the injuries in her neck and the strength in her left arm leaving her), I want to stick around so I can take care of her.

As for school, I only have around a $2000 loan to pay off before I can apply for grants and that won't take long if I get a job. I recently applied for a job as a conductor at a train station near Longview that pays $800 a week for trainees (the pay goes up from there) at entry level. I've heard back from them, but they haven't said whether I have the job or not, just that they've recieved my application and they have alot to go through. So here's hoping that pans out. If it does, I'll be starting after getting my GED (that's kind of the timing of when they start hiring for the positions [of which there are eight]) and I think I've got fairly good odds. I'm very confident in myself now.

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