Because I'm a fighter, I tend to deny feeling the stress, which is becoming harder and hard to do. As a result, as of today, I have to request "Reasonable Accommodation" for certain things in order to live with my Multiple Sclerosis diagnosis. For things I highly resent having to ask for, because they are silly in the eyes of the "normal" and healthy. Silly because the previous landlady didn't have an issue with the things I did/needed around here. She left a year and a half ago, because she couldn't get along with her new superiors. They do/did weird things - firing a maintenance man because he supposedly didn't take care of the outdoor grounds. Yet, the new hire didn't have to do the yard work. They wanted her to work 40 hours a week, after 15ish years of having Friday off. It became an issue because of her stroke - working more hours wouldn't be good for her health. Yet, the new landlady worked only 4 hours a day. Good management? Things we don't know about as mere residents? Only hear one side of the story? Maybe so. But sketchy, even so.
Those who know me know that I've always spoken up for the underdog. Sexual, physical, mental abuse victims. Domestic violence. Rape. Childhood sexual abuse. At some point, I attended a 6-week training for Hospice, learning about the special issues of seniors. I spoke up for others in lieu of speaking up for myself, until I finally started sticking up for myself.
So when MS made me "old" before my time in my late 30's - early 40's, naturally I carried my life's experience with me. Senior and disability issues seem to be my new "cause". When I saw a problem, I fixed it. The residents began to come to me, knowing I'd speak up. I was in a "walking a fine line" position tho...
Over the course of 5 years, I became the owner of not only the 2 little dogs that came with me when I first moved in, but then 2 kittens that were found in my car, on a hot summer day, AND another dog - a large dog came. It became clear to me that Annie, the Golden Retriever, was the answer I'd been looking for - I couldn't seem to handle using a cane or a walker for several reasons. The cats? Just too damn cute too take to the pound.
So because NiceLandlady allowed me to have 5 animals, I did whatever I could to help out around the place. The lobby garbage full? I took it out, while other residents would complain about the house cleaners not doing their job. Water the lobby plants, feed the fish, etc. She never asked, but she would notice sometimes and say thank you.
I always saw myself as LUCKY to have my animals. I never saw myself as a privileged individual, as in "ha ha, I get to have 5 animals and you don't". I operated from a sense of gratitude - not from a sense of entitlement, because I felt so lucky to be ALLOWED to have my animals.
Since February 2009, I have lived under the stress of possibly losing my animals, because we got a new landlady. She was a wishy-washy mess, not able to manage people, and did not understand disability and senior issues. The word in the hallways was she embodied the 3 C's - She didn't Care, she had no Compassion, and she had no Common Sense. She also became good friends with the one resident who absolutely hated me and who told horrible lies. (An example of one of the lies was accusing 3 of the male residents of raping her. Anally.)
After 4-5 years of living here with NO problems, I suddenly got 3 lease violations in one days time. Then again, I got 3 lease violations in one days time. So 6 violations in less than six months... (I have since learned there was another one, but I never received it. It's in my file, tho. ???) The lady resident that hated me had been there for about a year before the previous landlady left. NiceLandLady of 15 years, didn't listen to her, so this lying, yellow-bellied snake of a bitch wasn't able to affect me. Point being - I never got in trouble for anything until new LandladyDimWit believed the crap that LyingLadyResident told her.
This last January-February, I was very sick with a flare-up. Pretty much in bed 24/7, which also fed a major depression. That GOD that SanFranMan was there, cause he was such a help.
Evidently I was a couple of days late responding to the second set of 3 lease violations. We did go in to talk to her, to address the one violation I felt was valid - sorta. I had a guest who turned into a roommate for 6 months, and that wasn't allowed. There were 2 others in the building who had current guests for far longer than I had had mine. We asked her if there was any way he could qualify as a caregiver, because he certainly took care of me during my flare-up. We also told her he had MS and was applying for disability, so could he qualify for an apartment of his own. I knew that there had been other residents who had qualified while waiting for their disability or Social Security to come thru. LandladyDimWit said she would have to check with the head office in Boise. I told her that I wouldn't talk to her about the other lease violations until she made the rules the same for everyone. One of them was for having my dogs off-leash. Which was a total lie, because I have ALWAYS had my dogs on a leash when inside the building, and also outside if there were non-dog people around. My little dogs will sometimes jump up on people, and young Annie was VERY exuberant, and able to knock people down just from her sheer happiness. In an apartment filled with elderly and disabled... just too dangerous for my dogs to be off-leash.
Common sense, right? Of course, right.
But LyingLadyResident lied and told Landlady DimWit that my dogs were off-leash inside the building, complained about my guest, etc. A week before I got the 3 lease violations, the rumors started that I was going to get evicted. She even asked me if I had received my lease violations yet. Can we say "Inside information, perhaps?"
To be continued...