*Update #2* More than Enough…I Am Blessed Beyond Measure!…

eHeart CloudJust got home dollar tree and Walmart. I got some household stuff at dollar tree, trash bags, paper towels etc. Then I went to Walmart to get some food to last until I get my stamps on Monday. I knew I was getting “too much”…I picked up my medication at the pharmacy and went to the register. As she was ringing it all up I began to panic and hold back items….I casually said to the lady behind me…”I hate having to put things back”. “What do you need to put back”? I showed her and she offered to pay for the items. Then I looked at the total already on the register and told the cashier I would still need to take a couple of items off, just so I wouldn’t be broke….The lady behind me looked at the register and said, “Run all of this through with mine. I’ll cover it all”!!!!! I still can’t stop crying!!

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Medical tests, Psych eval, and Too Hot to Panhandle….

This past month has been a very busy one.

I have had multiple tests to try to find the source of my abdominal pain. So far, all the tests have come back negative, which is good, but still provides no answer.

I got turned down on my second review for SS, so I insisted on a new psychiatric evaluation. I know that it should help my case, but going through psychoanalysis is so incredibly hard. After it, I slept for almost two days. Having to tell all of my traumas from childhood on was completely exhausting. My lawyer is optimistic that I will either get approved on this third review, or we will go in front of the judge.

In the meantime, as it is in many places of the country right now, the weather here is torture for me. I have never done very well in the heat, but it is so bad out there, trying to panhandle is almost impossible. Just walking Penny for 5 minutes makes me feel ill.

The psychiatrist that did my eval also raised my medication dose, so I am trying to adjust to that. It just makes me feel tired.

I went out at 10:30 last night to stand in front of the convenience store just to get $4 for a pack of smokes. Luckily it didn’t take too long as it was still 90 degrees at that hour.

I didn’t wake until 2pm today, and was happy to see it was cloudy, thinking it will be easier to stand out there with my sign and get some cash for gas and more smokes, but of course, the sun has come out again..and it is steamy. I have to go either way, but I won’t be able to take Penny with me. I do so much better panhandling when she is with me, but I won’t make her suffer out there. I will wait another hour or two, hoping it won’t be as hot. Either way…I have to do it.

It is shameful, demeaning, and thoroughly exhausting….but, I will do it again, and again…until I don’t have to anymore.

Beauty

Beauty

Broke, In Pain, and Trying Not to Give in to Giving up….

I am so discouraged today.

I have been having some abdominal pain for like 4 months now. The doctor found blood in my urine with no UTI, so he thought it might be cancer. I went back to the doc on Wed. No blood in urine, but a bacterial infection in my vagina. I am now on antibiotics for that, and I still need to bring in a stool sample to check out my colon health.

Of course, a colonoscopy is what the doc says I really need, but as I am seeing him at the “free” clinic, there is only so much he can do for me with the available resources.

In the meantime, I am broke as always. My food stamps are gone until the 15th. I have food in the house, but am out of some things…Pepsi, bread, cigs etc. Now, the med the doc put me on is causing severe diarrhea and I don’t even have feminine pads to help protect my undergarments, so I just got done cutting up the dog’s wee wee pads to use.

I can’t go panhandling. It has been either deathly hot out or storming. Plus I physically feel like shit.

There is no way to even tell you how exhausted I am of this life. This struggle. This waiting for things to get better. I want to sleep forever. Thank goodness I have tranquilizers…at least I can sleep and dream, and not deal with this shit.

So tired.

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Homeless to Helpless to feeling Hopeless…Survival is Exhausting.

I am going to tell the truth about everything. I don’t care anymore who reads this, who cares or more likely, who doesn’t. I haven’t written in a long time. Mostly because all that I want to say is not exactly “positive”, the way I’ve always tried to be on this blog. Even during the worst of what I have had to endure these past few years, I tried to keep my hope and faith, and show people that it can be “okay”.

Well, today, I don’t feel okay. My life does not feel OKAY.

The last time I wrote, it seemed my life was getting better. I was working so hard to get back on my feet, and I was. I was going to classes, working at getting my GED, had a job. Everyone was cheering me on, telling me how proud they were of how hard I was working to “fix” my situation. Well, shit falls apart faster than you can blink. I guess I’ve been too ashamed to write since it all changed. Now, I just don’t care. I have to let this out and let the chips fall where they may.

I got hired at four different jobs this past year. Some of these jobs lasted a day, some a couple weeks. One job, the best job, even lasted a month, but that is because 3 weeks of it was in a classroom. I do that well, learning, class time.

However, after getting these jobs the anxiety attacks would start. Yes, I have a disease. It’s called Generalized Anxiety disorder. It is NOT a choice. It is NOT laziness. It is a real disease, and it is torture. So, one by one, each job was quit.

I also suffer from severe depression at times. (If you’ve followed my life at all up till this point, you’ll understand why). Depression is also a disease. I don’t choose it. I fight it. Some days I fight it with all my might, some days I glide through all happy, smiling, sunshine, photo taking, dancing…me. Then, there are days when it swallows me whole and I can’t find the strength to do the “positive thinking”, gratitude shit that can help.

Anyway, now that I’ve explained my challenges, my diseases, let’s add my daily struggles on top of this pile of shit.

Uncertainty while I was homeless was the scariest part. Never knowing what I would or would not have from day to day. Well, not having an income now creates that same fear, that same frustration and anxiety. The shame that I can’t take care of myself.

I have a place to live. I have food stamps. They give me $194 a month for food. You figure that out. Think about how you would eat, what you would eat, how you would make it last 4 weeks. It normally lasts about two. maybe three if I don’t eat much.

Now, let’s consider the other necessities of life. The things not covered by Food stamps. Toilet paper, dish soap, paper towels, shampoo, trash bags, vacuum bags….everything thing else needed to run a home. These require money. I have none.

I have one dear friend who pays my cable/internet and my car insurance each month, and tries to make sure I have all of these things. But, it is demeaning nonetheless to have to tell someone that you need them to buy you toilet paper…again.

I started panhandling about a month ago. I made a cardboard sign, found a nice spot at my local Wal-mart, and stood out there accepting money from strangers. Mostly being ignored and making people feel uncomfortable. Watching them look away, so they didn’t have to see. Most I think are just fearful that it could happen to them. Some judging and thinking things like, “why doesn’t she just get a job”…”oh, she’s probably not homeless” (which is true), or whatever else it is we all think when we see “those people”. Snap judgments based on nothing. No one truly knows what anyone is going through, but we all do it. Make those judgments.

Those of you who have read this far are probably thinking “there are resources”. No, there are not. Not for cash anyway. Welfare and medicaid are only for those who have children. I won’t even get into my health issues here, or the fact that without money or insurance, you don’t exist to the medical community.

Anyway, back to my story.

Panhandling was good. Pride crushing, but good. I averaged about $60 a day. This made me feel kinda good that I could buy my own stuff, the things I needed or sometimes just wanted. You know, important shit, like that scented candle (a luxury for me). Until some Wal-mart white shirt came one day and said I couldn’t stand there with a sign anymore. This morning I was at Wal-mart at 5am bumming cigarettes from people. IF you feel the need to say anything about my smoking, please move on now.

Omg, this post is becoming longer and longer.

I know that my ex will read this, and probably be happy about my misery. He never cared what happened to me when I was homeless, never offered to help, and still doesn’t. He is good that way. At just turning his back on people…he did it with his son, and his own mother, so why did I think it would be any different with me? He walked out on me, our dogs and our whole life together and never once asked if he could help. Never said me missed me, or asked if I was okay….so fuck him. I don’t care what if he reads this now. I will write the truth about him, my truth. He wants everyone to see him as the victim in this. HUH. He walked away to a job, a free motel room, a paycheck, and took our $349 a month food stamp card with him. I was left with a house full of our stuff, two dogs I had to turn into the shelter, and a two day eviction notice. Again, Fuck Him!

When I was homeless the only people who truly helped me were strangers, or distant friends. Not family, not siblings, not my kids….just strangers, oh, and one cousin (sorry hon). My brother offered a place for me to go back in Mass., but that wasn’t possible, he had his own problems. My other brother, never even tried to contact me. My sister who lives just 2 hours from me, wouldn’t let me live with her because her boyfriend didn’t want me there. Really? What the hell is that? I would never turn away a family member and just let them be homeless because of ANYONE. Maybe it was not even the truth. Maybe SHE just didn’t want me. A few months back as she and her boyfriend were facing some financial issues of their own, then got an inheritance from a dead relative of his. Not a shitload of money, but a good deal. They had just filed for bankruptcy, and she told me that her lawyer said they had to spend that money fast if they still wanted to file. She tells ME this. Really? Your gonna tell me that your “problem” is that you have to spend what I would consider a “great” amount of money really quickly, but don’t offer to help me? Then she tells me over and over how money doesn’t make you happy. Meanwhile, I’m looking under my car seat for pennies to get toilet paper. Yeah, okay.  Fuck them all. Karma is a bitch. I would never wish bad on anyone, but I’m tired of being silent about the way I was treated by those who are supposed to care. Whatever.

So, here I sit….no money at all. I applied for SSI for my depression/anxiety issues and it of course has been months. No income, not sure where to panhandle now. Running out of smokes…staring at a whole list of stuff I need at the store, all stuff that I need money to get.

The one bright spot in this past year is that I got approved for an emotional service animal. I got a dog. The loss of my dogs, Cody and Casey still breaks my heart every day, but Miss Penny Lane has helped to fill the lonely hours. She makes me laugh, she kisses my tears away…..I love her.

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I guess that is what I had to say….Just a rant. If it wasn’t raining I would be out somewhere panhandling or at least bumming smokes off of strangers. Survival is exhausting….I could sleep forever.

 

 

Husband on Bus, Dogs in the Shelter…Now What?

Later today I will drive the husband to the bus station, then I have to bring both of my dogs to the local shelter, and then, I am on my own.

I am going to try to keep it together, because if I break I may not recover. I must stay tough. I am devastated to be losing my sweet pups, and not so devastated to be losing the “other half”. It will be good to be free of something that has been dead for so long. I just wish I had a job, or a place to live.

I was going to go home to Massachusetts. My brother offered to send me some travel money in two weeks when he got his SS check. However, he called me two days ago…he had a stroke! I am so worried about him, but I can’t be there. I’m glad his kids are up there with him. So…change of plans.

I’ve decided to try to stay in Georgia. I have a little money, and am going to head to Savannah. They have more resources for the homeless up there, and more job opportunities. I’m hoping to make this money stretch for at least two weeks, but even that seems like such a short time. I know God will provide, but I’m scared too.

I guess that’s it for now! Please keep me in prayer…

Homeless, Scared, and Trying to Fund Home…

The title says it all…well, all I can say for now I guess. I’m scared. Am being evicted as of this coming Wed. Hubby is going his way, and I am going mine. I have a temporary place to stay, but it is not an ideal situation. My brother wants me to come back to Mass. He has stage 4 prostate cancer, and is on disability. He wants to pay for me to come home when he gets his next check, but I don’t want him to have to do that, so I am trying to raise donations to get me home. If I can’t raise enough to get home yet, the funds will help me to stay off of the street, and buy me some time. I know it is a lot to ask, and please, if you can’t help I understand. I want no one to feel badly. If you can’t help personally, it would help if you could repost the link for me on social media.  I am truly blessed by you all caring so much for me. Now, I guess you know why I have been so absent lately. Life is tough, but so am I. I will make it with God’s help. Hugs, love and peace.

http://www.gofundme.com/58zqnw

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Please Help a Stranger and Her Dogs…

I found this cry for help on my facebook. She is a woman who has rescued dogs and now may lose them by becoming homeless. I don’t know her personally, but does that matter? She is a human with a heart and needs some help. Even if you are unable to donate, please share her plight! Thanks

(The photo is of my two rescues, Cody and Casey)

http://www.gofundme.com/helpmekeepmydogs

"I love them"

What Do You Write, When You Don’t Dare Speak?

What do you write when all that you are thinking are words you don’t want to speak out loud? How do you voice the time spent deciding between paying the bills and buying food? Or how the new spot you found on your chest looks exactly like the last time…when you had skin cancer. You know you won’t go to the doctor..You waited more than a year the last time anyway, right?

You don’t call anyone to chat because all that your thoughts contain is not something you want to share. Misery does not always love company. You watch PBS. You see those who truly have nothing, as you sit on your bed, inside a home, not a tent or worse. You find your blessings in watching the extreme poverty that makes you seem wealthy in comparison. You find the tiniest of things to be grateful for…and YOU are grateful.

Don’t stop long enough to remember that you are a month behind on rent, that so far the landlord has not said anything, Don’t stop playing endless games of solitaire on the computer, mindless hours, so the thoughts don’t come in and bother you once again. Keep smiling, even when it hurts. So many have it so much worse. Does their misery make you feel better in comparing?? Sometimes.

I mean, you don’t want anyone to know that you might be feeling sorry for yourself. It would not be cool. They would think you selfish. Focus on others. Find a way to reach out to someone in a more dire situation. Don’t think about the spot on your chest. You are find. It is all okay. Stay in the moment. Pray. Believe. Trust.

Where did your appetite go? You know you should be hungry by now, but the thought of eating makes you feel ill. You will force yourself to try later….later. Oh, how you long to lay down for another nap, another escape. You are tired all the time. Muscles ache from disuse. You know it’s not good…You should get up and function…but you don’t.

It will all work out. Nothing is really wrong. Right?

How Much Do We Know? Does it Matter?

The age of unlimited communication is upon us. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, email, chat, blogs and many other forms of communication have infiltrated our lives, for better or for worse.

Without ever having to meet face-to-face we are allowed glimpses into other people’s lives. We read about their families, their jobs, their pets, and too many times, what they ate for dinner. (I’m having chili again) We read about their failed relationships, their financial woes, their amazing vacations, their amazing spouses and beyond amazing children, and so much more.

I have “met” and made friends with some truly amazing people here on WordPress, and through Facebook. One of my dearest friends  is someone I have never been in the same room with. She lives in France, and somehow, over the airwaves and with the help of Skype, we have become the closest of friends. There are people who have shown their true caring selves by helping me, a virtual stranger, when I needed someone most. I found this out a while back, when my favorite blanket was left in a New York motel room and later “rescued” by a wonderful person here on WP, and more recently by another blogger who offered to help me through a rough time with some financial aid. These are the people we get to “know” by their actions.

I consider myself to be a pretty good judge of character. I can read people’s faces, look into their eyes, and know what kind of person they may be, most of the time. In real life, this kind of evaluation is easier, but how well do we ever know the people we meet here in the “air”?

I always look for the good in people, but how much of what we see and read on the internet is “real”? How much is true? I am honest in real life and on the internet (if you choose to believe me), maybe revealing too much about myself at times.We all have skeletons in our closets, and should probably stay there, but when you are reading my blog, or looking at my Facebook page, this is me.

Is it naive to believe what people post on the internet? Are we being too cynical if we choose to believe that none of it is true? If you are anything like me, you choose to ride somewhere in the middle. You somehow know who you can trust, and who is full of…well, you know. But even the wisest, most perceptive of us, will at some time in our internet lives, realize that we have been duped. I guess in the end our internet relationships aren’t much different from those we have in real life. We are vulnerable when we let people in, no matter the mode of entrance. This is real life. We are taking chances, choosing to believe, and knowing that there is always the risk of being hurt or used.

I guess in the end, I will choose to believe the best in the people who cross my path. This is the only way I will discover those truly loving and caring people I treasure so much. As for the others? They will show up now and again, but that is when “delete” and “block” become the necessary tools of life in the “air”.

"Walking my Favorite Beach"

“Walking my Favorite Beach”

The Will to Be Joyful

I haven’t had any idea what to blog for a couple of days now. I am trying not to let myself get down. It seems this holiday is always the toughest for me. I know I’ve posted the “positives” of poverty at this time of year, and I DO honestly feel that way, most of the time. But, there are moments when this time of year just puts a magnifying glass to the lack.

I am very grateful that the rent and electric are paid, good things. I am hoping that hubby is not home for the entire holiday, as that would mean no paycheck next week. I can make the $190 last for two weeks if I’m careful, and I’m good at that, for which I am grateful also. I did feel a little bad when he wanted to buy me a present this week, and I had to tell him it wasn’t possible. I honestly don’t need anything, well, not for myself anyway. I tried raising money for the new tires I so desperately need for my car, but I didn’t raise a dime, not a big deal really. “it can wait”…that is my patent phrase lately.

December is a rough month. I lost both of my parents at this time of year, Mom on the 4th, and Daddy on the 18, my birthday sandwiched between them. My brother’s birthday was on the 19, but he has stage 4 prostate cancer, and is refusing treatment. Instead he is drinking himself to death. Nothing I have any control over…I can’t help him, he has to want to help himself, and he’s 1200 miles away, as are my kids and grandchildren.

Ugh. I’ve tried so hard to always post “upbeat” stuff on here, but I don’t feel “up” today. Sorry. I guess I just needed to vent a little. I know that there are people so much worse off…I used to be one of them. I will get up now and find all that I am grateful for…and find my joy in this day, and something more positive to write about, but…”it can wait”. Love and hugs all!