I wish I could go backward in time and change the outcome that left Megan and me homeless. I wish I had known about the National Council on Aging program before I lost our beautiful little farm. The loss could have been averted. The past cannot be changed; I wish for some means to change the present and future.
I wish I had a bed once again to sleep in. But I need a home to put the bed in.
I wish the world could know me – that I have worked my whole life, at times two or three jobs at a time to take care of my children and pay the bills. I wish everyone could know how Megan (then 11 years old) and I were in the car on the road for almost 3 weeks straight, except for the nights I had to go to my extra job, to collect money from households across 2 counties when I ran a fundraiser for Billy, a little 4 year old with cancer. Some of those homes out in the mountains could only gather together four or five dollars, but people wanted to do whatever they could. Hundreds of miles, taking his grandmother to the local tv station, the local newspaper, helping to care for Billy’s sisters, making jugs for businesses and running to collect from them – we raised almost $10,000 for his family. Sadly, Billy went home with the angels. We were devastated. But I would do it all again in a heartbeat.
I wish everyone could know the people who got in touch with me to help them or someone in their family, whose lives were saved, or prolonged, or eased by herbal remedies I have knowledge of and shared. I take no credit for the remedies, they are God-given for us to use. I only shared freely the knowledge I have gained over the years. Or the people on the street who I got lunch for, or gave a few dollars, for I cannot pass by. We are all brothers and sisters on this earth, and their need and pain is mine.
I wish you could all know me, how hard I have worked, how I have helped wherever I could. I do not drink, do not use any drugs, rarely even take an Advil. I do not spend for hair or nails or dinners out. I just want a home again.
I wish people could know what it is like to be 64 years old, to have no home to go to, to be at this stage of my life and see everything I worked so hard for gone. To wonder where I can go and what I will do for the rest of my days. To sit here at my oldest daughter’s tiny home and know that the welcome has long since worn out and helpless to change the situation. I have been here since July of 2010. They need their own little home back. I wish you could know the shame, the hopelessness, the defeat I feel.
I wish you could know how many jobs I have applied for, how no ones answers my applications. How limited I am now with what I can do. My bunions should have been operated on years ago, I live with them and do what I can, wearing slippers as much of the time as possible. My left hand is misshapen with arthritis. There are times I cannot pick up a sheet of paper with that hand. But I go on doing all I can.
I wish with all my heart that I just had a humble home, with a bit of land for our animals. My youngests daughter who just turned 22 was “stuck” here on this little island until she was 20 years old – no vehicle, never out on a date, no way to get to a job. When she was 20 we found a way to get her a cheap car. She now stays in the basement at a friend’s home and has her horse and our dog with her. She will need to leave there in a couple months, but can find nowhere to rent where she can take the animals. And cannot afford rent alone in this area.
I wish you could know how difficult it is to lose everything and attempt to begin all over again at this age. To have fallen into the abyss and begin to claw your way out, only to slide back down again. And again. I fall through the cracks – I get no government aid, no medical care, no food stamps, nothing. My social security is just under $800 a month. Each month I pray I will be able to save a bit more toward a home, and at the end of the month the total is up by $70 or $95. How long at that rate will it take to realize the goal of a little home? I cry.
I wish this could reach around the world, and the eyes and heart of someone, somewhere, with the means to help me. Not a hand out – a hand up. That somewhere there would be a kind soul able to lend me $22,000 to buy one of the homes that need some work. I could pay it all back at 4% interest, payments of $222 a month for 10 years. I wish….oh, how I wish. Homeless is hell on earth.