Last Weekend In August, 2015
a call from a friend can make a cold bed rest day just so much better!
On a sadder note, I think my indoor thermometer is broken. It says 70…but feels more like 50, except twice when I wheeled to the kitchen. Those two times it felt like it was 85 in there. I have checked the ovens, the burners, and yep, both are off.
Now trying to find thermometer. Did my coldness come from anemia and relief from menopausal hot flashes, or do I have an infection somewhere I don’t really have feeling and I have a fever? The joys of having multiple disabilities.
Hopefully it is nothing.These are the kind of things that occupy a mind of a home bound diasabled person as soon as the phone call is over.
And while I was glad to hear from that friend, I am praying earnestly for one I didn’t talk to today.
My best friend, who has been so sick, has now had a preexisting problem with his left foot become much worse, and who has a condition that makes it hard for his medicine to work, which makes his TBI so bad it’s not safe for him to cook, drive, make good decisions, or operate machinery.
So, prayed an entire St. Francis Peace Seed chaplet for him and his car, and going to try and fix his favorite Roman Dominican short rosary for him so he can have it to hold. He lives in a town with no mass transit, and spent all last winter home bound.
Prayed also for friends Joyce and Richard, who unless they take a bus or get a ride are home bound like I mostly am. Amazingly, I got to talk on the phone to them today also. To talk to two friends in one day is..well for me it is amazing. Between MS and Anemia, I am not concious often enough.
So Joyce and I traded notes about the folks over there and the folks over here, and had a shorter, but very nice chat. Her husband, her, and I all miss the days we used to go shopping together, or take turns having potlucks at each others homes.
The friend who called me this morning is just barely hanging on to her car. My best friend’s car is falling apart. Joyce and her husband just made the mistake of being disabled and old. I don’t have a car, and doubt if I will ever be able to afford one now that it would need to be somewhat wheelchair friendly..
It gets worse. Those of us who are often home bound and who have home care aides shudder at what some of these hardworking medical professionals are driving because the pay is so low.
So many of us elderly, disabled, low income working folks, and single parents just can’t afford decent cars. Even those who can, often have to choose between gas to get to the job or the doctor and heat, lights, food.
How do you get to the doctor or the pharmacy when you are home bound? How do you get to the grocery store? Or your brother’s funeral two towns over?
How do you pay for repairs, or a car payment and insurance on a fixed income that hasn’t even been risen to cover the outrageous gouging by Kraft, Nabisco, and General Mills? I still can’t believe that if your adjusted income after rent and taxes is even one penny over $973, you don’t qualify for food stamps. With the typical car payment being close to $300, insurance being at least $100, heat and medical – what’s on earth is left to buy food with?
How do you afford a car payment for a reliable car, that as a home care worker you will spend at least 3 hours a day – not reimbursed – driving from client to client, when the pay is so low you can’t pay a payment, insurance, and gasoline?
But even those good things come tinged with the realization that:
- before the cuts triggered by the Tea Party shutdowns,
- before the gas companies were allowed to charge outrageous prices in poor neighborhoods, while rich folks with fat checkbooks get special “club discounts” because they don’t have to check the balance each time they gas up,
- back before states started dismantling social safety nets, and
- before the 1% stopped hosting and going to gala fundraisers for homeless shelters and food banks,
We – all of us that talked today, and even my best fried….we all might have spent the day together in person, and had a BBQ. Chances are we would have bought charcoal and some chicken, maybe some BBQ sauce and contributed to the economic growth of our community. We would have laughed and shared our sufferings, and we would have had a good healthy meal, eaten slowly and savored.
Lack of decent, affordable transportation robbed us today of our Pursuit of Happiness and our Freedom, and contributed to the continuation of the economic depression.
Things need to change.