as I perfect my home, a story of a woman without

Over the weekend we were gifted our sofa and a table for the guest room (you have furniture, Mister!).  The apartment is slowly coming together … pictures to come when we make more progress … which is incredibly poignant as I watch an unfortunate trend unfold among my peers.

Post graduate unemployment is twice the national average and stories about people my age who feel like they are holding their degree in one hand and empty promises in the other follow me everywhere.

One of the best examples I’ve encountered recently is the memoir “The Girl’s Guide to Homelessness” by Brianna Karp.

Karp tells her story, which begins at the age of 10 when she gets her first job.  The job allows her to both support her physically and mentally abusive family. who cult-ishly follow the teachings of Jehovah’s Witnesses, and escape the family as well.  I wanted to reach into the book’s pages and slap her manipulative, manic mother, and I am as peaceful as a lamb.  The tension leaps toward the reader.

After Karp grows up and lands her perfect job, she is suddenly the victim of the economic downturn.  Her cozy, salaried job vanishes, and she is forced to live out of the abandoned trailer left behind by her late father, who recently committed suicide.

The remaining story chronicles Karp’s struggle with the stigma of homelessness and her uncertain future.  She attempts to find work, dodge those who judge her for being homeless or not homeless enough, and even falls in love.  While most memoirs do not have a “twist ending”, the last several pages of this book were so good I almost woke A up to discuss them.  Almost.

I often get teased by A for my morose choice in books.  Some of my favorites include the protagonist in a concentration camp, the protagonist dying in a bus or the protagonist dealing with the sudden death of her husband.  I can’t be trusted to pick out an uplifting book, “The Girl’s Guide to Homelessness” is still one to check out.

While I”m a day late for World Homeless Day, let’s not forget to consider those among us (human or animal) who do not have a roof tonight.

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