They say ‘home is where the heart is.’ It must be where the remnants of my broken heart remain. I would love to pick up the pieces.  But not if I have to go back there. The memories would only shatter new growth tissues. Fragile tissues that tear constantly, as I experience new losses because of my homeless – no, houselessness.

This week, as I celebrate the dream come true of a pop-up business, I suffer the loss of my best friend. Not to death, but to distance and guile. Distances that may have been reduced, guile that may have been stymied, if I had a place to relax, rejuvenate my mind and restore my wits. I am wiser than my opposition but at a distinct disadvantage without a place to ever rest my head, to have a full nights’ sleep.

Then there is the pain of missed opportunities. Without housing, I have incredibly limited time with my children. I am absent in their wonder years, relegated to little more than an ATM with minimized contact. I miss their milestones.

I knew their faculty as casual acquaintances. They greeted me with hugs. This month my daughter finished her first year in middle school. I never even saw her in dress uniform. I met only one of her instructors. We had no Father’s Day or Fourth of July celebration. Monday my son started his first job. I wasn’t there to display my pride, offer “sage wisdom” or straighten his tie.

People worry that I’ll die on the street from heart disease.  But heart failure, though painful, can be quick. I just don’t want to go due to loneliness or heart-break because it’s more intense, slower and tortuous. There is no place to run. No fortress of solitude. Nowhere to hide. No bat or man cave.

No place like home.