I am 20 yrs old. I come from 3 generations of poverty. My family is made of teachers and farmers. MY grandparents hometown is a ghost town now. My mother has moved into a 27 ft trailer with no heat or running water. She is a single mother, with multiple untreated health problems, much like the rest of my friends and family. She is missing 1/2 of her teeth. She worked in the adult industry to put me through school. Eventually, with yrs of hard work, she took over a vintage clothing store - in 2007. When the economy crashed, she was forced to pay rent @ the store instead of our mortgage. We lost the house & the store.
Now I live on my own. I have no car, no license, no health insurance. I pay my rent by working Mon-Friday at an ice cream shop for $7.25/hr. I walk 2 miles to work every day. This leaves me no time for school, which I couldn’t afford anyways. I would apply for financial aid, but my mom does not have solid tax information because of her work history. So until I am 25, I will have to pay for education out of pocket. My pockets are empty.
If my govt would let my marry the woman I LOVE, I could claim my independence from my parents & file for aid. But this country views me as a 2nd class citizen. It does not “recognize” our love & commitment.
My whole life, I have lived paycheck to paycheck. I know what it is like to sit at school & wonder if I would come home to lights & running water; more than once, these amenities were taken from us. I have prayed and prayed for a miracle. I am working off my mothers debt, who is trapped underneath her student loans and her parents debt.
I WANT TO STOP THE CYCLE. I WANT TO HELP MY FAMILY. I WANT TO HAVE HOPE!!!
These dreams slip further and further away every day.
I AM THE 99%. SO ARE YOU!
We are being sucked dry, and left for dead.