Friday, July 8, 2011

The American Dream- Edited and Revised

Ok, typically I only post once a day, but I was on the Daily Kos and found this absolutely poignant and powerful piece that I want you all to read. It about moved me to tears. I'd like to admit that my family doesn't live this way, but we have and it wasn't long ago. There are people out there suffering and struggling and if just one of  you could be moved to give back, even just a little... Please. It truly is the little things. The good trash bags line about killed me. I STILL remember the first time I could buy trash bags somewhere other than the dollar store again. They just want to take their trash out without the bag ripping, dumping everything on the ground. Is that too much to ask?? Anyway, here is the copy and pasted article from the DK...

I want to not be invisible anymore.

I want to get up and shower and have somewhere to go.

I want to punch the people who talk about the recession being over.

I want to not have to choose between toilet paper or dog food.

I want to take back all the money I spent on student loans for an education that does me no good now.

I want to stop mending the waistband of five-year-old sweatpants.

I want to not consider two tacos for a dollar at Jack In The Box a splurge.

I want to walk into a job interview not reeking of desperation.

I want to be able to afford a simple goddamned urn for my daughter's ashes.

I want to pay just one bill on its due date, not have to wait until the FINAL NOTICE.

I want to be able to drive across town to pick my kid up so he doesn't have to walk in the rain.

I want to shop at the Dollar Store because I'm thrifty, not because it is the only way I can afford luxuries like body wash, toothpaste and laundry soap.

I want to be able to drive the two hours to Santa Cruz to visit my dying friend.

I want to pay for a haircut, instead of using the kitchen scissors to “even up the ends again”.

I want to have a shit job to bitch about.

I want to not panic every time the doorbell rings unexpectedly.

I want to split a tab or treat someone to something.

I want to wear contact lenses again, instead of these wobbly old glasses.

I want to be able to buy a present for my goddaughters.

I want to go to the theater to see a movie and pay for my own damn ticket.

I want to drive a completely legal car legally.

I want to not have to choose between buying tampons or a pound of ground beef.

I want to buy a book that ISN'T on the 25-cent rack at the Thrift Store.

I want to stop avoiding my friends because they're pitying or worse.

I want to not have to invent new ways to rearrange my resume and STILL get no response.

I want to get my dogs their shots so I can take them to the park.

I want to use good trash bags.

I want to wake up without dread that today is the day it will all come tumbling down.

I want to consider owning a spicebox and a mortar and pestle NOT a pipe dream.

I want a new bra.

I want to feel like a real person again.

I want to BE a real person again.

I am sick to death of this Middle Class poverty (not a penny to my name, but the remnants of a better life all around me)

I am sick to death of dumbing down my resume, groveling for jobs I could have done at sixteen and STILL not getting hired.

I am sick to death of feeling powerless.

I am sick to death of apologizing and being shamed and embarrassed for being one of the long-term unemployed.

I am sick to death of tailoring my resume to each job and STILL not getting a response from 99% of the companies I apply to.

I am sick to death of people telling me that I “really should see a doctor” when nothing would please me more, except that I can't afford to do so.

I am sick to death of not even getting interviewed for open positions, and then getting shitty service from the person they DID hire when I didn't even get an interview.

I am sick to death of turning down invitations to do things with friends, because I can't afford to do so.

I am sick to death of pretending that holidays don't exist because I can't afford to celebrate them.

I am sick to death of throwing away 2/3 of my mail without even opening it because I know that there's a bill or a statement from someone I owe that I can't afford to pay.

I am sick to death of explaining to other people that “getting a job at McDonalds” is not as simple as they think.

I am sick to death of hiding, being quiet, trying to play nice, mentally composing suicide letters, trying to figure out who can take care of my dogs/cat/kid when it all goes to hell like it is bound to do.

I am sick to death of feeling powerless.

I am sick to death of being unable to pay my own way.

I am sick to death of people telling me that “it could be worse”, because I know that it could and I am convinced that it will and I am only biding my time in this limbo which is a certain kind of hell all its own.

I am sick to death of these conversations where my friends and I try to brainstorm ways to get the hell out of this town/state in hopes that there is some place where we can still trade hard work for decent wages and crawl out of the hellhole we've fallen into.

I am sick to death of having to look my son in the eye and admit that I have failed him, that I failed his sister, that I have failed us all.

I am sick. And sad. And exhausted. And undone.

The original can be found at:*#ing-life-back

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