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Homeless with COVID-19

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11.04.2020

When this virus appeared in the news a few months ago, I was fairly certain it would die out and come to nothing. But today, I find myself temporarily moved out of my apartment, living with family, and isolated from the rest of the world. Due to my schizophrenia and antipsychotic medication, I am nervous that there could be complications from COVID-19 if I caught it, so I’m doing everything I can to stay safe and well. I’m not very afraid for myself, but I am afraid for the homeless.

As the virus spreads across the nation and the world, I keep thinking back to my years mentally ill and homeless and wonder-- what would I have done if the pandemic had begun while I was living outside?

For three years, I hid in buildings, and in 2006-2007, I spent thirteen months outside in a churchyard. Living every day outdoors, I felt very healthy. It was a little like a camping trip, and the fresh air was pleasant.

Because I was paranoid of entering a homeless shelter, I chose to sleep outside. I accepted almost no aid from family, friends, food banks or........

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