No matter how comfortable the couch, couch surfing is never an ideal situation.
At the beginning of the semester I was bouncing between friends’ couches. I would stay on one friend’s couch for a few days before moving onto the next. Frankly, I hated it. I always felt like I was imposing on their space.
Not having a place to call my own made me realize how grateful I was for what I had been taking for granted. Although my friends were welcoming me with open arms, it never felt like home. I was beginning to miss warm, home-cooked meals and my cat.
Another setback to couch surfing was having to schedule my day around when my friends would be home. Personally, I never felt comfortable being at my friends’ houses without them.
During the time period that I couch surfed, I wasn’t getting homework done because I was always hanging out with whoever I was staying with or bending my schedule to fit theirs.
Not knowing where you will sleep the following night is one of the most terrifying experiences. I never thought it would be as scary as it was, but I was surprised. It was unnerving. The last thing I wanted to do was sleep in my car.
Luckily, it never came to that for me. But for many people it does.
Not everybody has family or friends they can stay with. Some people may not even have family in the area. Where does that leave them to sleep when they have no other place to go? If they have a car, maybe they can sleep there, but often the only choice is homeless shelters.
I had friends joke that I was homeless. Often it offended me. I didn’t like the thought of being homeless; it wasn’t a reality I wanted to accept. I felt like I was less than everybody else, and that made me feel as if I was losing pride.
Thankfully, couch surfing didn’t last a long time before I found roommates and a place I could call home. But even then, the place I landed didn’t feel like home. It wasn’t home.
I was lucky. Not all people who couch surf find somewhere more permanent as quickly as I did. Couch surfing made me realize very quickly all that I had to be thankful for when I lived with my parents.
It’s that time of season to be thankful. Take a minute and show gratitude for having a place to call home, because other people may not be as fortunate as a lot of us are.