I have written about my friend with MS before. The 2 1/2 years waiting for disability is over. Sort of. All the support received over the time of Dirt Poor has magically disappeared. No co-pays on the multiple medications. Doctors visits with the regular ER crisis in between. Most caused by the stress of having nothing. Now are all on him. He didn’t write the rules that punish him for having an chronic conditions. One that caused him to lose of everything society considers being a productive member. .
I want you to think about this. Knowing you won’t be around to see your kids graduate high school. Get married. No Father/Daughter dance to that special song. All those shared joys when the adult child gets the joys and hardship of being the Parent. And knowing he won’t be around. Or if he lingers. I’ll let you finish the sentence. The human animal flees pain. However temporary. Alcohol. Gaming. Sex. Drugs. Religion. Something to blunt the sharp rocks at the end of the fall.
A very American way of thinking. It will all work out. Always has. But not right now. Rising above the low spots is a function of long term planning. A survival tool available to those with resources. A family trait of stability. Searching for the hidden horizon. Sorry to say that people who suffer from depression or chronic debilitating illness don’t have that luxury. Our lives have gone off the rails. Fundamental brain chemistry has shifted. Cortisone floods the system. In a continuous state, the structures of the reality creating brain adapt. Normal becomes seeing an endless horizon over a flat landscape. One which hides the holes covered by thin mats of hope.
My brass ring has been smack in the middle of some very large ones. No amount of effort will put it in my reach. Down the deep dark hole. Again. All the effort climbing out is the same others put into moving forward. Medication allowed me to sublet the shallow gopher hole I called home for decades. A bucket list item has been to learn Spanish. My mind understands Quantum Mechanics. Mutual exclusive. Another foreign language should be Long term thinking.
One of the first casualty to falling into poverty is hope. A flower not a weed. Flowers can have deep roots in the right soil. Soil that has been cared for over time. Protected when young. Tended with love. Those of you who are eternally optimistic think depressed people need to work harder. We think you’re has crazy as we are. In a different way. One that makes our life harder. Not better or easier. ‘You’re broken. We’re not.” Work Harder. Unfortunately bubbly personalities follow the American script of a better tomorrow.
And these folks elect lawmakers who are fully immersed in the belief that a person dying with a chronic disease is the same as the very small percentage trying to scam the system. Two and a half years. Then penalized his win by taking away benefits. Ask a lottery winner what it’s like to go from poor to RICH. Trump is a product of losing hope. Hillary is living in the reflection of a past where hope was strong. My friend and I simply find ways to manage the constant dull ache of living. Hope is a dangerous way. One false step. Worse off than before.