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Kris Pauli

I don’t have curtains on my windows because I love the sunlight. I have my doors open so that I can see outside and let the breeze come in. In early 2000 that changed.

I had my windows and doors closed and locked. No lights were on and I would spend days at a time in bed hoping I would fall asleep and not wake up. I was feeling that no one liked me. I felt that my kids and family did not love me. A few of my closest and trusted friends had died. I felt all alone. I had no one to talk to and felt that no one cared. This led to thoughts of suicide and feeling like I had no purpose in life.

I put up a good front through the years. If I had to go out and anyone asked how I was feeling, I would say “fine”. No one knew what was really going on. I had reached a point in my life after a few years of this depression that I couldn’t do it anymore. I had a plan that would work better than the last one.

A very good friend of mine pulled me aside and said: “Kris I have been watching you for weeks. Something is really wrong. What is it?”. I broke down. I was homeless, depressed and suicidal. She told me that she knew right where to go, “CMHA Huron Perth”. I was connected with a CMHA case manager and put in the transitional housing program.

Within 4 months I had moved into my own apartment. I am still there and really like it. I have my windows and doors open again. I volunteer with the shovel to spoon program at the local community food centre. I feel like I now have a purpose.

With the help of CMHA I have learned skills. I tell myself at least once a week to make others happy you have to be happy yourself. This has really helped me. I prefer to be around positive people and a more positive myself. I have also learned to do things that I never thought I could do. I can now talk to a large group of people. I could never have done that before. I am very proud of myself. I want to share my story so others know they are not alone.

Kris Pauli