Haven’t written in awhile. I’ve been dealing with many things lately and haven’t seemed to easily gather the energy or inclination. The past few nights have been nervous ones. After rent I had just under five available dollars in my account. This means food pantry again this month–and we have to make it last because we can only go once a month. Choices are crucial: do I choose the can of mandarin oranges from the pantry or the pumpkin pie filling? Which type of noodle provides more bulk, spaghetti or egg? With egg noodles is there more protein?
Another night here in the hospital with my husband. He has pneumonia and they can’t seem to keep his fever down. Two nights ago I brought us both here with symptoms of heat stress. The (supposedly new) central air unit to our trailer started making its own unhealthy noises and finally stopped. We spent one hellish night trying to sleep, but it wouldn’t come for me. My beloved spouse, already ill with fever, couldn’t do anything but sleep and baste in his own juices. My dog engaged in scary, rapid panting. I stayed up all night trying to google for helpful numbers (one reason Internet is a strange non-luxury) on my low-cost wifi for those of us on public assistance. I called a slew of 24 hour assistance numbers, texted my landlords (church people), and generally worked myself into a hot frizzy to no avail. I worked the phone and my email well into the following afternoon. Oddly enough, the fact that a disabled woman couldn’t afford to fix her air conditioner to help her sick husband and precious pet cool down elicited little more than scripted lists of who else to call for help, anyone-but-us, who all had similar responses. One guy, from the “House of Help” snorted, “I have a window unit, but I can’t give it to you. I don’t have any money.” Puzzling.
The sum total from my efforts was a 12-inch window fan which, as anyone experienced with June in the South can tell you, is just a punishment. And I received a frozen chicken. Which if I cooked would probably kill us with the heat.
When the thermostat read 95 degrees, the air was like molten metal, and my spouse was having seizures, I brought us here to the hospital. It’s a cold world, just not in a way we need right now.
What I keep thinking is this: 1) God is supposed to be our source of help; 2) He works through people; 3) reaching out to my local church people did squat. Does that mean something about God, the local church, people, or all of the above? Does the fact that almost all I can feel is a raw, gnawing sense of abandonment mean that there’s something wrong with me? That I’m “playing victim”, looking to ascribe blame? When what I want is a good home, health for my little family, peace, and a chance to do something like afford a movie once a year. Is that too big a job for God, or are his employees just tone deaf idiots?
If The Church can’t help us now, who can?
My husband’s last temperature reading was 100.3F. It’s up again. His breath rips through his body as he lies there passed out from total exhaustion. And we have no insurance and I don’t know what we’re going to do. I’m so scared I want to vomit.
Earlier a church member offered me the requisite “thoughts and prayers” via text. I miss my dog who is housed elsewhere. I can’t do anything to make my husband well and he is my only friend in this world.
Thoughts and prayers.
Choke. On. Them.