Hello. My name is Merry and I am a cheapskate.

Cheapskate: A miserly or stingy person; especially: one who tries to avoid paying a fair share of costs or expenses.

Or, in my case, someone who procrastinates about paying bills, because they like to be able to eat and afford their medications.

I woke up today with the intent on taking care of the monthly bills and expenses. You know, adulting. It is a game of robbing Peter to pay Paul. (Not McCartney.)

This is always a day that I dread, because then I start to worry. The worry becomes anxiety. My stomach starts to turn and I feel like I am going to hurl chunks.

A bit of history is in order.

I grew up poor, although my parents did such a good job of surviving that I was hardly ever aware of it. Sure, we ate lots of oatmeal and government cheese. My clothes were secondhand, the toys were simple. My brother and I would share a corndog and lemonade at the mall.

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I always went for the top half.

It didn’t matter, though. We were happy kids, regardless of our financial status.

I never went to college after I graduated from high school in 1992. I made minimum wage at most of my mediocre jobs, or slightly above if I was lucky. So, not having much money is not a foreign concept to me.

1,000 recipes for ramen noodles!

But now that I am no longer capable of working, I collect about $500 dollars less than my old income was in disability payments.

Don’t get me wrong, I am grateful for it. I had to hire a lawyer to get it, because I was denied the first time, I personally believe because of my young age. How exactly does a 37 year old woman lose her ability to earn a living?

It can happen in a blink of an eye, trust me.

It’s not really my place to discuss details, but my husband also didn’t further his education. He has a garnishment attached to his weekly checks. He works hard for little reward, but he goes to his job everyday without much complaint.

I have a great recipe for a pasta and chipped ham casserole!

I imagine that some people will think to themselves, “Oh, boo hoo! It’s all your fault that you are poor! You should have done better in school! Serves you right, you lazy bitch!”

True, the world needs lawyers, but we also need people who cook fish sticks for residents in nursing homes, so kindly fuck off.

100 ways to cook chicken on a budget!

My biggest fear is losing the condo. A roof over your head is the number one priority. (This has been hammered into my head by my mom.)

Food comes second. (With my daughters income now, we get $16 a month in food stamps.)

Utilities, third. If there is no shut-off notice, they get skipped over for the month.

Medication is also of the utmost importance. If I don’t take my antidepressants or blood pressure med’s…well, you can see where I am going with this.

Oh well. Worst case scenario, we will live in a van, down by the river.

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Don’t ever become sick, my friends. Our government gives no fucks. I am not sure if other countries give their disabled citizens a livable monthly benefit, but here in the good old USA, that just doesn’t happen.

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