Sometimes life needs to take its twists and turns in order for us to find home. And some of the twists can be beautiful and those turns can be messy. But, we need them to get us to the place where we are.

Kenneth experienced the twists and turns of life. A beautiful son who he is completely devoted to in every way. An abusive relationship he needed to escape that was marked with mental health issues. Beautiful and messy.

Leaving the relationship meant losing his home. Staying in the relationship meant further abuse. He chose the former, but it was not a simple decision. Being homeless meant disconnection from his almost grown son and living in a Hartford shelter meant he was not readily available for that son who was living in Springfield, Massachusetts. Kenneth made the decision to leave the shelter and live in the woods of Enfield. Enfield would keep him close to the services he needed and keep him close to his son who needed him.

So, there is where he stayed. In the woods of Enfield on the banks of the Connecticut River. For years. His situation was less than ideal, but he made it work for him. A local police officer befriended him, outreach workers provided what they could. Summers and falls and winters and springs passed and Kenneth remained in those woods. His case was complicated and his options were few. That was until Coordinated Access Network Navigator, Kelly Gonzalez, met him in November of 2016.

Kelly reached out to Kenneth and he very quickly told her that while he wanted to be housed, abandoning his son was not an option. Kelly helped him understand that finding a home would probably allow their relationship to reach a whole new level. Kelly reminded him that caring for oneself helps us care for others. With that knowledge, Kenneth made the decision to begin the process. He had all of his necessary documents for housing in less than a month and, on January 3, Kenneth was matched to one of Community Renewal Team’s permanent supportive housing units.

Kenneth is all moved into his new home. He has food and furniture and a place for his son. Twisting and turning gets us to where we need to be. The beautiful and messy of life brought Kenneth right where he needed to be — home.