Eggnog Was Limitless, Monroe, Pennsylvania

By Bambi T. | Posted Friday November 30, 2012

I came from a poor family.  We always struggled, but we made it.  Even in poverty we had some good days.  One way or another, we went on.  We suffered times of fear, but things would get better.  We never became wealthy, by any means, but we stayed a step ahead of being completely destitute.  That was so many years ago.  I never thought of becoming rich.  Life was bearable with a few good surprises along the way.  My father would tell us of the extreme poverty during the depression.  We felt grateful that things weren’t that bad.  We could eat, even if it wasn’t always what we wanted, we could eat.  And there were times we could eat exactly what we liked.  On Christmas, we could afford the luxury of unlimited eggnog.

I am now 58-years-old.  My parents have passed on.  Over the past eight years or so, it has become harder to survive.  The past few years, being “a step ahead” has become a mere illusion.  Fear is my constant companion now.  Fear of homelessness is suffocating me.  I was homeless with my kids some years back.  But I managed to maintain a rental yet again.  Am I now destitute?  I don’t know.  I do know that I live second to second.  My two older kids are grown, out in the world with their own struggles.  It is now my youngest daughter, who is 19 and in the autistic spectrum, and myself.  It is also the 4 rescued cats that no one wanted.  It is the 8 stray cats that people have dumped for me to feed.  I no longer have a car.  The local welfare bus takes us to medical appointments.  My health is becoming worse from riding that bus for hours and hours, sometimes never even reaching the destination.  That’s another story.

I am thankful that I still have phone service.  Yet, like many days, I have to be on it for hours pleading with utility companies to not raise our rates, to not cut off our services and to feel like dirt because they always make it a point to tell me I have a responsibility to pay my bills.  I know this already.  Am I dirt?  I worked very hard for many years.  Now my health is so poor that I can no longer do it.  I could go on for hours and hours, telling about the struggle to survive, but that is life now for the 99%.

It will be Christmas in a few weeks.  I was in Walmart the other day.  Eggnog is over two dollars per quart.  Just looking at all the bottles of it was frightening.  I can not entertain the thought of buying just one quart.  Buying one quart of eggnog would mean I wouldn’t be able to afford the co-pay for a much needed prescription.  I had to tell my daughter no.


Tags: hunger
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