DECEMBER 27, 2014
Christmas day… 2014.
I am humbled.
Growing up we didn’t have a lot. We didn’t have the nicest clothes or the nicest shoes. But we did have everything we NEEDED. And unfortunately it came at a cost. Both my parents worked their butts off to get what we needed. I hardly ever saw my mom at home. And my dad jumped from job to job. I made a promise to myself that when I grew up and got married and had children, I wasn’t going to Work to Live. I wasn’t going to spend most of my days working just so my kids can have everything they wanted. I will NOT live struggling with money.
My husband and I have been very very fortunate have really good paying jobs. He has been with his employer for 14 years, I have been with mine for 10. This year has been a wake up call. Since my pregnancy, I have had to stop working. I currently am on a leave of absence because of my son. I am his primary caregiver. And my husband had lost his job because of all the time he had taken to be with our son in the NICU. (we are looking for a lawyer to sue, by the way, if anyone knows a good lawyer, please email me.. FMLA laws are supposed to be strict in the state of California… they can’t get away with this)
Anyways, since neither my husband nor I have had an income since September2014, we have been struggling, to say the least. Luckily, both he and I have had a deferred compensation account connected with our jobs. We have been living off that supplemental retirement, but it is all gone this month. Right now I only have $200 cash and a $35 gift card to Target. This needs to last me two weeks.
Christmas had just passed and I was afraid and worried the entire holiday. I mean, I know God always provides and He always comes through…. but I did wonder how?! What was He going to do for Christmas? How were we going to buy our kids gifts?! We, as a family, have had an incredulous year. All I could think of was giving our kids the most amazing Christmas… but I really didn’t know how that was going to happen.
BUT….GOD! He always provides. At church, a local motorcycle club had spoken with our Pastor’s wife and told her that they wanted the names and ages of all the children in the congregation because they wanted to donate gifts for everyone. So, thankfully, our girls received gifts from that group. We placed those gifts under the tree until Christmas.
Then, the day before Christmas, we got an amazing surprise. At my job, we have a support group that helps the employers families and do fundraisers for families in need. Well, my name was brought up by one of the ladies in the group. And, the day before Christmas, these sweet sweet ladies dropped off gifts for all the kids. I was so shocked!! I was so amazed!! I couldn’t believe it!! And it wasn’t just one gift per child…. it was like 3 or 4 per child. So come Christmas morning… our girls had an amazing Christmas. To see the joy and the excitement on their faces… wow! Blessed!!
I have never felt so humbled. I am not the type of person to ask for help or tell people my problems for sympathy. I usually just fight through whatever is going on and God helps me through. But this Christmas… I needed help. WE needed help. When people asked how they can help us… I really just needed groceries. And that is what we received. Money and/or gift cards for groceries.
I don’t need possessions or anything extra… I just needed groceries. I even humbled myself and applied for food stamps; but because of the job that I have (technically I am still employed) I didn’t qualify for assistance. My husband applied for unemployment, but for whatever reason, he didn’t qualify either.
These last few months have been very humbling. I thank God and I praise God for all that He has provided. He will get us through this.
So as we wait for my husband’s full retirement refund to come in the mail… I must go make a list of groceries we need that will cost less than $100. I have done it before and I can do it again.
Until the Lord gets us through this financial burden… I will stay humbled and simply say Thank You.