Wednesday, November 24, 2010

"Your family has been selected...."

…to take part in our "Giving Tree" program for needy families."

That’s a weird feeling, when you get that call….I went through the gamut of emotions—my first thought was "We’re not needy, we’re just broke!" After all, even though I know I/we don’t make much money, we’re over the poverty level, and there’s food to eat and a house to live in….and all…..

Then I started wondering about who had nominated us for the program. They must know that we’re struggling, that I’m trying so hard, and that we could use a little boost. Who could it be, though? I don’t bring it up to people (except you)—I usually try hard to pretend that I’m just like everyone else (who has discretionary income and TV and doesn’t have to keep the thermostat at 58*) and if someone does comment about how frugal I am, I just tell them I’m a cheapskate. So who could know? I was touched, though, and while I thought about this, I felt like crying, because someone out there understood.

And then I started wondering if maybe I’m not hiding it as good as I thought I was, and maybe I look/act poorer than I think. That made me sad and made me feel kind of like a failure.

And then I started imagining what DD would get for Christmas without "help", and what she might get if I accept the "help" and there was no question about it. I’m accepting it, no matter what, but I still feel weird.

It’s a weird feeling, for sure.


Robin said...

It is a weird feeling, I know. Someone signed me up for the Christmas Bureau so I received gifts for my boys, gift certificates to a grocery store, and a full Christmas meal in a basket. I was grateful, but a bit sad too.

Anonymous said...

You're far from a failure; you're coping beautifully and taking care of several people and many animals virtually all by yourself.
This is your time to receive. You deserve it. And no, you don't seem pathetic or needy at all.

perphila said...

I understand that feeling well. It isn't like I can hide it either where I live. I am very grateful for the support I get but at the same time I feel like an idiot for letting things come to this. I have the kids to think about so I never say no and I try and give back to the community in other ways so I feel like I am not just taking all the time. It never gets any less weird feeling but I do feel less guilty.