December 13, 2012
Perspective is a Funny Thing
In November, I filed for the SNAP Program (food stamps). It’s not something I’m proud of — I have never taken handouts before this round of unemployment. But getting on Medicaid in June made me realize that these were benefits I have been having deducted from my salary all of my working life, so why should I not take the hand, now that I do need it.
I was approved, with a partial award for November, and a set amount beginning in December. The thing is, I know that many people struggle with that amount to make ends meet. To me, that amount seems like a fortune.
My food budget has been between $75-125 a month for so long. And I have managed to make more-than-do with that — mostly because my diet has been changing. Mind, thi bounty doe not mean that I will be having filet mignon every night, by any means. But it means that I can have a more balanced diet, which is one of my goals. It also means that more of the house money can go to paying down my debts, which is a good thing.
It might also mean that I can get that root canal/post/crown procedure sometime before the end of 2013, which would be a very good thing.
I also got a lovely email from one of my credit cards. I am on a payment plan with them, and they realize that I also am in an area nominally affected by Hurricane Sandy. Therefore, I have the option of not making a payment until March of 2013, with no hit to my credit report.
This is especially good news because, while my overdraft privilege has been covering the shortfalls in the budget, we are still feeling the fallout from when the creditor broke its agreement with the roomie. This will give me a better chance to start cutting down on the overdraft payment fees, and get my bank account back on track.
So, even though it has been a rough year financially, I am getting some hope for the future this month. We shall see if the good things really work out, but hope is a heck of a lot better place to stand than “I’m in over my head with no way out.”
Are you afraid to ask for help (be it from friends, family, or the various agencies that are there to help people? What is the block, if any, to asking for help? Are you even aware of what help may be available in your area? Are you entitled to help because of your age or economic status? Some other factor? Where can you turn to find out? What hopes do you have that keep you going when things get rough?