Monday, March 26, 2012

When You Lose Everything

By Dominique Scarinci

          Megan Williams is just 19 years old and has gone through some life-changing experiences living in New York City at a young age.

          Q: How long have you been living in New York City?
          A: I have been living in the city for nineteen years.

          Q: Do you live with family or do you live on your own?
          A: I live with my family. My brother was living with us but he moved out ten years ago. Once my brother left, it was just me and my mom. My father recently moved in with us this past year.

          Q: What was it like to witness your brother move out at a young age of nine years old?
          A: It was difficult because I never knew where his current location was. He did not have a permanent residence until many years later. My mom was always worried about him, but she felt like she was teaching him a lesson by kicking him out.

          Q: Did this make you dislike your mother for a period of time?
          A: Yes, because she allowed my brother to leave. I missed having him around the house to watch after. After he left, I was alone and never picked up and played a video game again. That was our bonding time together.

          Q: What building do you live in?
          A: I currently live in Co-op City in the Bronx, NY. I used to live in New York City Public Housing.

          Q: Why do you no longer reside in New York City Public Housing?
          A: My mother was falsely accused of not paying rent, when in fact she did. She went to court several times and they continued to dismiss her case. But it was not until the moving people came and knocked down our door and said that we were being evicted that it felt real.

          Q: At what age did you go through this experience?
          A: 18, just about a year ago.

          Q: How did it feel going through something this outrageous?
          A: It was difficult because my mom had a city job; she was not collecting money from the government. She has a good job and to see this happen to her, it made me upset. I’ve seen my mother work hard for so many years to give me a roof over my head and to see it taken away in a blink of an eye was a traumatic experience for me.

          Q: What was the aftermath of this event?
          A: The court put a stop to the eviction, which was good but bad at the same time. My mom and I were able to go back to our apartment but had to unpack what movers had packed already and deal with our property being stolen by the movers. My mother wanted to move out as quickly as possible and that is why I now live in Co-op City.

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