After being on the streets all those years, I grew extremely tired of labels. I called myself a hobo because bum and homeless didn’t not really make me feel to good.
There is another group of people that have been labeled since day one; those labels have gotten kinder over the years, but they all still rub me the wrong way.
They went from retarded, to mentally handicapped, special needs is the label they get now.
I am all for calling them the sweetest people on the earth.
My birthday was Saturday and I had spent most of the day sleeping and feeling sorry for myself.
I had not had a real day off in a couple of weeks and things were not going so hot with my girlfriend.
I was invited to a dance and hamburger feed at the Elks Lodge that featured the Singing Cowboy, by a friend of mine. So I rousted myself in the evening an headed out there. I get the feeling that group of people does not like being labeled either; the event was in the paper and made no mention of special needs.
At any rate one young woman, who was not shy, asked me to dance a couple of times, and I danced with other folks as well, it was fun. All My Exes Live in Texas was a pretty good song to swing dance too, and I showed my friend some swing moves.
Well after getting sweaty on the dance floor and having my fill of burgers, I ate three I am ashamed to say, I went out and smoked a cigarette.
When I came back in the Singing Cowboy asked me is my name was John and if it wasn’t my fifty first birthday.
Now he did not have to mention my age in my mind, but then the whole group sang me happy birthday which was a little embarrassing, but overall very sweet.
Later I found out the friend who invited me, a woman by the name of Susan, had arranged the song.
I was having a sit in the hallway when the young woman I had danced with was on her way out with her mom.
She wanted a hug and then kissed me on the cheek. The affection made my night.
Changing labels in society and even in our own heads takes some time and work, but it is well worth it to see yourself and everyone else, regardless of what society tries to pin on them, as a child of God.
Hobo John here, I love you with everything thing that I have you beautiful child of God you.