“The United States is supposed to be the land of opportunity. Some citizens may have a harder time accumulating wealth if they are born poor, but the possibility is supposed to exist. This sense of upward mobility is now disappearing due to America’s free trade policies. More and more Americans are now living in poverty, and the path to prosperity has all but disappeared. The vast majority of Americans are willing to work hard to get ahead, but there are few jobs left where working hard gets you anything more than a meager paycheck.
Over 49 million Americans are now classified as living below the poverty line. Additionally, nearly half of all Americans are classified as low-income, which is defined as a household income of less than 200 percent of the poverty line. The poverty line for 2012 was defined at a yearly income of a mere $23,050 for a family of four. Often low-income individuals have nearly as difficult a time getting by as those living below the poverty line, because they do not qualify for many assistance programs.” From Economy in Crisis
Today I want to take you down a completely different path…
I really hadn’t planned on going here but here we are!
THE PATH OF POVERTY
If you are reading this blog you are at a point in your evolution where you understand that you can have a new consciousness about Prosperity. You know that you can create a better life.
People who live in poverty don’t even have that awareness.
Real poverty is hard to extract yourself from because you are living in survival from moment to moment. I know this first hand because I lived it. I saw it first hand professionally working with families who lived in poverty. I have also seen it around the world in my travels. Poverty is real and it is a beast that will gobble people up who don’t have the strength to extract themselves.
I raised my children as a single mom and lived on unemployment during that time. I can tell you lots of stories of what it is like and so can my two children, Nathan and Carrie. I will tell you one personal story to give you an idea of what it was like. Listen to my words. Really try to put on my shoes. Read between the lines at what I am not saying. Feel what it was like to be my kids….
MY POVERTY STORY
I got fired from a job about three weeks after I had gotten a positive review and a raise from my boss. The reason I got fired was because I wouldn’t stand for his sexual harassment. He would follow us into the narrow isle of the file room and whisper dirty jokes in our ears and grope at us. Most of the women stood for it because they couldn’t afford to lose their jobs. I couldn’t afford to lose my job either but I also couldn’t afford to lose my dignity. I remember when he came and told me to clear out my desk because that was my last day without any warning. My anxiety shot sky-high and for about 2 minutes I literally went blind. That’s right, I couldn’t see. The room started to spin and my vision disappeared.
It was three weeks before Christmas and I hadn’t bought my children any Christmas presents yet. Instead I went to food stamps office. I was so humiliated that I cried the whole time I talked to the person at food stamps. I walked away with $72 for a months worth of groceries for the three of us. That would buy about a weeks worth of groceries, which was something, but not enough. We ate a lot of Kraft Macaroni and Cheese and Ramen Noodles. Not the best nutrition but the best we could buy. This is a fact of poverty. Organic, high quality food that builds strong bodies and keeps you healthy isn’t an option. Government issued cheese and powered milk is.
I couldn’t buy my kids Christmas presents that year and that was heart breaking…
I wasn’t eligible for unemployment because I got fired. I could have sued the man but I barely had the strength to care for myself and my kids. I was a young mom in my 30’s and I was afraid.
I remember how my credit rating quickly dropped, along with my self-esteem, because when I ran out of money, which was $425 in child support, I had to use my credit cards to pay for our expenses. I maxed out a number of cards with no way in sight to pay them back. It really got hard when bill collectors started calling, many of them several times a day and night. I couldn’t get away from them. It was before caller ID so it got to the point where I didn’t answer the phone most of the time. I couldn’t provide for my children the way I wanted to and I was embarrassed every time a bill collector called and asked when I would make my next payment. I didn’t want to lie and I didn’t want to tell the truth either. Some times I agreed to payment plans that I couldn’t keep and that got me in more trouble.
I remember one weekend when my kids were gone I wanted to go to McDonald’s and get something to eat. That is another thing about poverty, you make poor food choices because you can’t afford to do otherwise and fast food is cheap. Anyway, I went through all of my jacket pockets to pull together enough money to buy a Happy Meal. (Ironic isn’t it?)
I went to McDonald’s order my meal and ended up being a nickel short. Now the person who was waiting on me could have just said it was okay, but instead he announced to the crowded restaurant in a very loud voice “Does anyone have a nickel?” Trust me I wanted to shrink down to an inch high and sneak out of there as fast as I could, but I was very hungry, so I stayed got my food and ran out of there. When I got to my car I cried.
What I am saying by telling you this story, which is just a nibble of what it was like is, poverty kills your self-confidence, shatters your self-esteem, makes you feel powerless and hopeless, is embarrassing and the only thing you can focus on because you are just trying to survive.
Imagine 49 million Americans living this way. They are not going to think about raising their vibration to get into prosperity consciousness! Many of them have lived in poverty for generations. Their vibration will be one of anger, frustration, shame, resentment, poor self-image and FEAR, all of which are not conducive to changing their situation.
You can’t tell these people that they created their reality by what they were thinking. I knew that and it just pissed me off! You can tell them if they change their thoughts, raise their vibration that life will change before their eyes. If you did, you would probably get punched!
I was one of the lucky ones!
Because of previous circumstances in my life, I was newly awakened and knew some of the tricks and I knew there was something better. I knew it in my soul and already had a strong connection with my Inner Divine Self and it was a driving force in my life. I used my situation to transform my life. Most don’t.
This isn’t true of most people who find themselves in poverty. With out the knowledge and truth that I carried I would still be there. I would have drown in the hopelessness and fear and never found my way out. My kids would still be living in poverty like many of the families I have worked with as a therapist.
I dragged myself out of poverty one step at a time. One day at a time. Until I was in a better place.
I learned to have compassion for people who are stuck…for people who can’t make better food choices for their children…for people who get in trouble and develop bad credit ratings…for people who do desperate things to survive. I know what its like to be in their shoes and I understand why they do the things they do. My experience made me a great therapist.
I remember a few years ago I was at a conference and I was walking down the street to the conference hall. There were a few hundred people in front of me. There was a homeless black man sitting on the side-walk leaning up against the building. As I approached he said “Good Morning!” and I said “Good Morning to you!” and he said ” God Bless you, you are the first person who has talked to me all morning!” I walked away heart-broken. I couldn’t believe that none of the people in front of me who past this man had said anything to him.
THIS MAN IS THE FACE OF POVERTY!
I know how blessed I am to have been in a consciousness that supported me to drag myself out of the poverty vortex and it’s powerful pulling spiral downward. I know how blessed I am to have created a prosperous life so that I can now live a dream life. Most who live in poverty never get this chance.
I suggest to anyone reading this blog who wants to grow their prosperity consciousness to look at how blessed your life really is right now, in this moment, no matter what your circumstances and shout a big Thank You to yourself, your Inner GPS and the Universe, and God and the angels too. You have already come a long way.
Thank you for listening to this not so easy story…
Please share your comments in the comment section so we can dialog.
See you tomorrow for Part 10 of Prosperity Consciousness