Why Women Return to a Life of Hell

For over a month now, the girls and I have had no income. Sleepless nights of worrying about how I’m going to survive tomorrow are getting to me. Waking up to face each day and the inevitable tears that follow are leaving me feeling dehydrated physically and emotionally. Some how, each day brings some sort of a blessing to make the day bearable. Then darkness covers the sun and the sleepless cycle begins again.

Let’s start with receiving public assistance … there’s no pride in this path that we are on, but we didn’t make the decision to be put here either. I called my case worker on Tuesday to find out when my benefits would be approved or denied, only to find out that some things were missing. I spent the day running across three counties to gather the paperwork and get it in.

On Thursday I called again … still, a missing paper, again I bust my ass to get the paperwork to her. That’s it, we’re all set and I should know by today if I’m approved to receive benefits that I’ve paid taxes for so others can get them.

This morning (Friday) I got online to see if my benefits were approved. NOPE, now I have yet another hoop to jump through. I have to attend a Job Readiness workshop to prepare my family for self-sufficiency. This is wonderful, considering that my appointment isn’t until March 28th, and approval is hinged on whether or not I show up. This also happens to be the day that my daughter has THREE appointments at Mary Free Bed, a hundred miles from Job Readiness, but hey, things aren’t all that bad, the medical appointments are back to back, to back, and the Job Readiness appointment is smack dab in the middle of appointment two. Cloning myself is beginning to appear to be a wonderful option.

To add to the melee of “life is hell” is the fact that our family doctor feels that my daughter’s medical needs are to the point that I must be with her 24/7. Her main diagnosis is depression, which is causing havoc on her physically and demands appointments in Grand Rapids near daily. Psh, depression? People survive that crap every day! Then there are those that don’t; as a former cutter, my daughter is at risk of not surviving. Add to her history the fact that we are still living in a shelter, we are reeling from the blow that my children and I have been dealt, and her grades are suffering because of the chaos our lives have become. If she’s not at risk of losing her battle for life, then I don’t know who is.

Yet, the state has decided that everything is fine, I can work 40 hours, find a home, get my daughter to all of her appointments, go to court, do laundry, drive at least four hours a day to those appointments; and everything will be okay. Oh, eating, almost forgot, that takes time too, but who needs food!?

Here are my priorities, in order, find a place to live, for stability; help my daughter heal to a point that a 15 year old can be self-sufficient; THEN, find a job and get out of the system.

Having worked for Michigan Works, and DHHS, I know how the game is played, I’m just a number … my family’s needs are not considered, just do it there way and everyone will be happy. Everyone but our family that is still trying to heal from devastation.

As far as the state is concerned, medical shmedical, who gives a flying *drop eff-bomb here*! We are left to wonder where we will be next week, next month, or even tomorrow. Will we survive? Is it even possible to survive? If it is, I’m damn sure that we are the family to do it, but if it isn’t? Well, I’ll leave that up to your imagination.

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