I Am in a Shelter

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(There was a time in my life when I left an abusive relationship. I knew the only place to be safe was in a shelter. Here is the story I wrote while there, and I hope it draws you in to feel the magic that can be found in even the most difficult moment.-Tami)

I am in a woman’s shelter. We sit--the community table before us full of gourmet vegan dishes. One of us has a little money, another a ride, one shops, two cook all day.

In our time of need, they combine and pour their gifts over us.

This, all of this, is one of the most magical times of my life.

All colors of skin, combining us like a chef mixing ingredients to make someone never before created. Something delicious.

You think we are hard on our luck but we are not. 

We are amazing.

This place, prepared for us to launch our freedom.

Some married. With kids. Cohabiting. Too young for kids. All.

Trying. Learning.

Some one. Some where. Many people contributed to this moment. Built this structure. Secured it. Invited us in. Prohibited others from entering with cameras and protection.

There we sit--beautiful people coming together in this moment.

I’ve only been here a few days. A transitionary respite from there to here. I am safe. Loved. Provided for by you and God and me. But not by him. He misused that privilege and now it's revoked and now he is furious.

I learned one of us died last week. But not in vain. His fury. Her release.

My beautiful room, two bunk beds, enough for my three kids and I.

Overnight bags prepared for my sweet little ones greet us as we first sit on our clean beds.

They give us toiletries and a warm blanket and a good night book each. We left with nothing and this tender detail is making us comfortable...wow.

My children, covered with bruises, play on the playground like little children without care. They play and play and play.

In the morning I make my children breakfast as volunteers scour our kitchen shiny clean.

We are happy but I must leave today. My lawyer has advised me to return to because our legal proceedings require it.

I am concerned but not afraid.

Detached, the administrators check us out. They let us go, unsure of our outcome but not needing details.

I can do this now. She can do this. She and she and she. And our beautiful children.

Safe, beautiful sisters.

Thank you.