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Thursday, October 16, 2008

Poverty

I had intended to post this yesterday, since it was International (or National) Blog day, and the subject involves poverty. I was doing some blog surfing, and found this awesome digi scrap blog. I'm not blog-savvy just quite yet, so I dunno how to post word links instead of the actual url, so you'll need to be patient while I learn all the blogging lingo. *hehehe* The blog that truly struck me is this one: http://mermaidshaven.blogspot.com/ In it, she tells of her own personal testimony of what poverty is like, and how it impacted her own psyche and family. I have my own story, and hopefully I can sit here and write it all without shedding too many tears. Not long after I met Hubby and we got together, I suffered a terrible emotional/mental breakdown and ended up suffering from complete and total amnesia. Nothing like forgetting everything that is you, is there? The only two things I could actually remember was Hubby's name, and the name of my supervisor when I was working. The rest? All a complete blank. With intensive therapy and the use of medications, I was able to regain approx 75% of my memory. It was found at that time that I also suffer from severe bipolar, anxiety issues, PTSD, and various other "head" issues. It was also discovered at that time that Hubby and I were going to be expecting our first bundle of joy. (I was told years ago I would never be able to have children, so this was truly something that blew me out of the water!) Pregnancy was bad, I think I had one of the worst, most complicated pregnancies my doctors (yep, had to have more than one) they have ever had in their practices. William was to be a turkey baby, being born around or right before Thanksgiving. At the very start of my third trimester, I started into major pre-term labor. That was also around the time that Hubby, while getting ready for work, injured his back and was completely bed-ridden. After two months of intense contractions, drinking water until I thought I was going to blow up, I was admitted to the hospital because of sever preclampsia. Our sweet William came into the world the afternoon of October 30th, 2003, a full three weeks before he was supposed to be born. Because I was so huge from having polyhydramneos (giant word for too much amneo fluid), my doctors had a very difficult time trying to get the bleeding to stop. After giving life to this precious angel gifted to us by the Lord above, Hubby and our precious angel nearly lost me on the operating table from blood loss. For William's second Christmas, I broke down and had his name added to the Salvation Army's Angel tree. A gracious family adopted him, and provided for him so many wonderful things. Another family adopted us as well, from a Yahoo group I was part of for women looking at trying to start home businesses (since I was totally unable to work outside the home, and Hubby and I deciding it was best I stay home to be with William). This family's church adopted us, and provided for us hundreds of dollars in gift certificates, grocery items, and clothes galore for not only William, but for Hubby and I as well. I was absolutely speechless when she told me this. She told me that her church adopts one family a year, and after hearing about all of what had transpired in our lives, they voted 100% that we would be that family that year. During the last 5 years, we have had so many ups and downs, sometimes more downs than ups. Hubby had to have major back surgery, I was hospitalized for almost a month 6 weeks after having William for sever postpartum psychosis, William being diagnosed with autism, me being out of work and sometimes Hubby not even being able to work because of health issues, it's almost too much to even fathom. My parents (Daddy passed away 3 years ago this coming March) have been our saving grace to allow us to remain in our home (both old one and our new home now), provided us with food, and the gracious donations given to us at various times. I don't know how we would have made it through this time period if it wasn't for these things. I know what it's like to go to bed hungry for days on end, just so that I knew that William had a good meal in his belly. I know what it's like to rob Peter to pay Paul, and then have to grovel at the local food pantry to get us through until the end of the month. I know what it feels like to have to apply for public assistance for food stamps, and to get medical care for William. And even after all that we've been through, nothing has come between the relationship I have with Hubby. Even one of these events would be enough to push a couple over the edge and right down to the courthouse to file for divorce. Never once have we had to come to that place. We've fought, argued, and sometimes gone days without speaking to each other. But we love each other now more than when we went before the JP and spoke our vows to each other. I know people think of the starving children in Africa when they hear about poverty. But, poverty is taking place right now, just down the street where you live. It might even be affecting your next door neighbor, or even you. It touches each and every one of us in some manner. Please don't turn a blind eye to the homeless man on the corner, or when you see the Red Kettles and bell ringers outside your local malls. There's so much you can do to combat such a tragic event we all face in this day and age. I still struggle with trying to make ends meet, but it's getting better. I'm forever grateful for what we've been so blessed with, even these dark times that have shown themselves in our lives. We wouldn't be where we are today if it wasn't for them. We also would be taking advantage of so many things we know can disappear in the blink of an eye. Please don't take this as me being preachy, because that's not what I'm trying to do here. I just hope that maybe someone will open their heart, today, tomorrow, maybe next week or month, and do their small part in fighting poverty. I pay it forward with what was given to us, I hope you would do something like that too, even if you haven't had to experience first hand what poverty is like.

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