I went online and requested the interview for food stamps, which is called SNAP now, and other welfare assistance. I’m pretty sure that in January there will suddenly be an extension, but in case there’s not, well, I got to keep working towards some kind of resolution. Welfare isn’t my first choice, but I do need a safety net.
The lady is reviewing us for everything and most of it will take a while because we need to provide additional information. Well, that’s okay I guess. However she said she was planning to approve the food stamps that day, which actually was pretty impressive. Of course it will take a week for the card to arrive, but at least we can plan grocery shopping.
And that’s what I’m thinking about today. I mean, Yay! Groceries! Dinner! But what about toilet paper?
No, seriously. Food stamps can only be used on food; you can’t use them for toothpaste or laundry soap or tampons. I don’t think I can go 3 months without shaving my underarms or washing my hair, how do I pay for razors and shampoo? I mean I can hardly go on a job interview without taking a shower and putting on clean clothes, but those take supplies too.
Not to mention, in my apartment complex, I don’t have a washing machine in my actual apartment so I need to pay for laundry. That’s $1.00 to wash and $0.75 to dry. Oh, and my lease includes a clause that I won’t put a laundry line on my patio so I can’t hang clothes out to dry. I suppose I can do underwear by hand in the sink and hang it in the tub but that won’t work for jeans.
Charli the kitty is watching me type this, and I wonder how to take care of her. I got her when I had a job and it’s only maybe $30 a month for food and litter. She isn’t expensive but food stamps won’t cover it. I get that we want to help people not animals. Yet life circumstances change, so the cat who was extremely affordable a year ago is a financial burden today. What do you say to people with pets? “Why did you get a pet if you can’t afford to feed it?” Well, really, I could afford to feed her when I got her. And she loves me even if I can’t afford laundry soap and smell like a yak. She loves me if my teeth fall out and my leg hair is long enough to braid. Life is tough; the unconditional acceptance of a beloved pet makes things a little more tolerable. Besides, since things do change in unexpected ways, are you going to suggest that nobody should have pets in case they have financial reverses at some point in the future?
So yay for food stamps and boy do I need them! Just remember that isn’t all I need to bootstrap myself to a better place.