I write a lot about perspective and how elevating yours will allow you to see how great life truly is and I stand by that statement, life really truly is great....and as I write that line I suddenly realize I need to settle in because today it is not just that perspective that I am wanting to discuss, no it is the other side of that realization.....the truth behind why I spend so much time saying, living and purposely convincing my mind of this....the harsh cold realities of this life and of what poverty is really like.
We have all watched the wonderful rags to riches stories, you know work hard you will get there, be discovered, your ship will come in all that jazz, somehow when we watch those heroines it is somewhat romanticised watched through some rosy colored glasses as if the writer of the script really had no idea what it was like to live as a poor person in this wonderfully materialistic world of ours. This reality struck me with even more clarity and disgust just two nights ago when I received a call from our local power company. Of course my account is way way overdue, although I make payments EVERY month, except of course last month when my husband had the accident with the hand crushing, that one payment missed meant that now I was up for roasting and interrogating about how possibly could I not have any money to pay the light bill.
So here is my version of what it is like to live in condition of poverty. It is not a whine fest it is a reality check and an honest conversation about the working poor that live in this house. I by no means want to compare my reality to anyone else's or elevate my conditions as being more important than theirs, so here goes......Health issues cost us lots, my health issues, there was a time where no one was turned away from our doors, there was always a place to sit at my table and if there wasn't enough for everyone because of surprise visitors then I made extra, no one was ever turned away for shelter or food, those were the days of a successful landscaping business and lots of flowing cash everywhere and everyone got some.....now we have these days where after almost 3 years of no outside income finally last summer a little bit of reprieve came, a tiny job that would allow for some funds to help out around here, then my job with the call centre, I did it well and was doing well but health issues with the kids made that impossible to continue with so that was short lived......while it lasted as much as possible was paid down on all those debts. Now we still pay but the reality is the funds are just not there to catch up because of course those bills they keep adding up monthly.....so every week it is the same question, what does not get paid this week? what do you let slide? should it be the medication that is desperately needed? or should it be the food? which utility can you pay a little less on? let us not forget the two broken down vehicles that need to be repaired so that at least the tiny amount of funds that comes in can keep coming in....so one week like last week you give up on anything else you thought or knew you needed and put all you have into that, one step at a time.......keep going forward and hoping that light you see at the end of this tunnel isn't just another bill collector that found a damn flashlight.......cause when you are poor no one treats you different than they treat others right? wrong.
A very clear example of this is how for this week we have had a car sitting out in the driveway, a new car, very pretty, very glossy black and very much not ours, but do people know that well of course not so they assume......so for the last week when we have pulled in anywhere or gone anywhere we get a different look, a different respect from the same people that saw us for so long pull up in a more weathered and rusty vehicle before.....funny isn't it....suddenly worth talking to us. There there is the other example the woman from the light company who grilled me on why I could not give her more to the point of tears and having to tell her to go and look at the notes on the file because I called and explained when he was injured that there was no way I could make that one payment but would resume the next month, her response? I don't have time to look through all the notes you owe us and it is my job to collect. Even though I had done the right thing for her it didn't matter all that mattered was that I showed a debt. Truth is we all have become worth what our bank account reflects to a majority of society now.....I don't know about you but I think it is a really sad comment on us as humans.
And! so it goes on and on again, today is Friday the day of choice, how much can you afford to pay? how much can you afford to go without and what meds are really not as necessary this week? That is the reality of poverty, and once you fall into the hole pulling yourself out of it is not as easy as it looks in those movies....no it is heartbreaking and soul crushing most of the time. People will judge you for your tattered clothes, your rusty vehicles, they will gossip about you and distance themselves from you because you are not "fun", or you cannot go visit them (this takes fuel people! which means extra money!) do people understand these facts? no sadly they do not.
Do you understand why I post so much about elevating your perspective? because if I spend too much time thinking about the realities then I will never do anything else.....so I create, I bend wire, I surround myself with pretty and beautiful energy and I believe that the days of this ending are coming.....maybe in reality they are or maybe they are not in the end it really doesn't matter what I think or anyone else, all that really matters is that I keep finding a way to stay positive and keep going, and I will keep patching up the holes that others keep picking in it......figure I must be on the right track since I seem to incur so much resistance from the nasties......see anything can be changed into a positive experience or thought......