I’m a proud mom of two. My oldest just turned 17 and my youngest child, my son is turning 12. I’m blessed with really good kids; they are my favorite people to hang out and chill with. As a family we cook, play board games and do crafts a lot together.
When I was first married, I was a stay-at-home mom until my youngest was in second grade and I went back to work. Just as I really got back to work, we got sent home for COVID. Shortly after that, I went through my divorce and then, I had my first stage four diagnosis. It was a rare type of non-smoking lung cancer that forced me out of work to get treatment.
My income was getting lower and lower. I was in a position where I didn’t even have gas money to put in my car. It got to the point that I just didn’t know how I could feed my kids anymore.
With my health and finances the way they were, I really sat down and considered if it would it be better for them to go stay with one of my siblings. I would almost rather not live, but I would do that for them. I would want to do the best I can to make sure they are being taken care of. But luckily because of United Way and resources like Mother’s Pantry, I’m able to keep my kids with me.
The way Mother’s Pantry runs is so efficient and the workers are so helpful. I even enjoy coming in and spending time there and talking to people. It’s better than the grocery store. And to not worry about how I’m going to prepare a meal for my kids today and feed them takes such a load off of me.
I had not heard of ALICE (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed) before but once I learned what the acronym stood for, I thought that’s me, exactly. Everyone knows about the people that successfully feed their families every day and everyone knows about the people who live in poverty and depend on government support. Our ALICE demographic may not be understood because we have a great need that people aren’t going to see. We might just look like an average family but I’m going to continue to experience dependence on outside resources.
Help more families, like Angie’s!