- been within fifty feet or so of drug dealer related shooting and in the midst of a community scrambling for safety,
- been given a purple planted orchid by a Saintly named woman out of her baby carriage filled with her worldly belongings,
- been adopted into fatherhood by a young lady whose life story is tragic beyond words to convey and
- been given a purple beaded bracelet as a sign of this daughterly adoption.
As I come to know the men and women of Kensington, specifically the homeless and addicted, their stories become increasingly sensitive and personal. Their collective story is what I am trying to share with you as my way of breaking the stereotypical beliefs that exist in regard to these fine people. Names are rarely their actual names and wherever I can do so, I might use the opposite pronoun (his/her, etc.) just to help increase their privacy.
Thursday, March 7, 2019
“Do you have any water?”
This is Part two of a two-part blog. Click here for Part One. Each blog is it's own true story. When considered together, the reality of this one day will be made real to you...
“Do you have any water?”
“I have one left.”
'Rose' walked across the street to my open driver’s side window. She told me how thirsty she was. The rate of drizzle was increasing. Her winter coat and hair were getting soaked. Tears were running down her cheeks.
“You’re crying. What’s happened?”
Her hands were so cold, she asked me to open her water bottle.
Rose pointed east on Lehigh as said, “I started to wake up from my high and realized I was almost totally naked. There was a man almost on top of me. I was able to get him off of me. He took off in a large white pickup truck. ZHR was part of the license plate.” Sometimes quotes in my blogs are paraphrased a bit to protect privacy. This portion is not a paraphrase.
She continued on…
“I’m so sick of this! I want my life back! I'm a Mom! I love my children! No one understands how horrible my life has been! I was found in a trash can shortly after I was born… My mom got me high from my earliest years… My uncles molested and raped me during my late childhood and early adolescence. When I finally met my dad as a barely legal adult, he routinely raped me and told me he did not see me as a daughter but as something to use."
The rain was starting to fall heavier. Raindrops which have fallen to this earth since Genesis 1:6 ran through Rose's hair and tears made up of the same with the added ingredient of a broken soul poured down her cheeks. I got out of my car there on Lehigh. Rose sank into my chest and wailed with the agony of her multiple family betrayals.
After a couple of minutes, Rose composed herself enough and took the conversation in a direction I wasn't expecting…
"I've been watching you for months, Banana Man."
"I'm actually Chris.”
"Chris, you’re a good man. You're a caring man. I see how much you care about everyone here." Please put out your right hand."
I extended my right hand. With the grace and smoothness of a seemingly anticipated moment such as that point in a wedding when you slip the ring on your new spouse's finger, with these words, Rose slipped a bracelet from her wrist to mine…
"This is my favorite bracelet. Will you please wear it and be my Dad?"
After a moment of stunned silence on my part…
"Of course, Rose."
With rain soaking both of us and tears now running down two sets of cheeks, she continued…
"I don't want any money from you. I don't want tricks. I just want you to be my Dad and for you to love me like a daughter."
We spent the next half hour or so being lightly rained on and talking the way a father and adult daughter would upon meeting for the first time. A new twist to this was to friend each other on Facebook as a way to keep in touch in the absence of Rose having a phone.
I had a few socks left and gave them to her.
Rose shared with me her goal of getting into a detox very soon by way of Prevention Point. I've sent her a note or song each day since. She's not been online so I'm trusting that she's in the blackout stage of her detox.
Before going to Prevention Point, she needed to buy her next dose of "medicine." She made no attempt to ask me for money to cover its cost. Her departing request was that I watch her from my car as she walked down Lehigh and turned out of sight onto Emerald. I did exactly that. I prayed for her as she walked away as I do now each day.
I had to sit some more in my car there on Lehigh. In the past four hours, I'd
It was quite a day…
I can't wait to go back to this area 35 minutes away.
 She carries a taser and mace.
 The exact quote included the number of uncles and her exact age range of these attacks.
 And God said, “Let there be a vault between the waters to separate water from water.” So God made the vault and separated the water under the vault from the water above it. And it was so. God calledthe vault “sky.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the second day. NIV
 "Tricks" is another term for the 'dating' that young ladies do on the streets.
 This is a several day period in which the patient is not allowed to be in contact with any outside friends or family. This is also a time when patients begin to break their communication, hopefully permanently, with those people in their lives that have caused so much harm.
at 3/07/2019 12:23:00 PM