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Eye of the Storm 

I call this button ‘eye of the storm’ and I’ve chosen it to represent a very stormy passage in my life. It’s a beautiful button: black with sparkles of light in it. The sparks are like glimmers of hope in a dark world.

I have been homeless for several years. At one stage I was reduced to living in my car for 18 months.

How did this come to happen to me? Well the answer is simple.

It could happen to anyone. When life is going well for us it’s as though we are living in a bubble. You have your home, your family, your marriage and your children. And you never think that one day something will happen to burst that bubble.


That’s what it was like for me. My marriage broke up. One thing led to another, and somehow, you find your whole life unravelling. Everything slips away.

The only companion I have in my life now is my little dog, my Chihuahua, Chanel.  She even lived in the car with me!

The situation that I’m in has been going on for years. People sometimes ask me what keeps me going? How do I keep going, day after day, year after year? It’s a hard one to answer. I suppose that I would say that it’s ‘a survival instinct.’


I was brought up on a farm in the States, and we were taught to be very tough, very self-sufficient. Maybe it’s that? Not many people could survive the things that I’ve been through.

Another thing that gets me though is my sense of humour. I have to laugh at all the absurd things I’ve had to deal with.

What else keeps me going? Just like anyone else, I take pleasure in the small things of life: buying a new winter coat or having a Chinese takeaway. It’s possible to enjoy the small things in life. Even when you’re in a situation like mine.

Ann Cumberland Quinn

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