Here’s the deal. Things are tough for a lot of people and we happen to fall in that category.
Disabled husband hasn’t had a raise in social security for the twenty-two years he has been considered permanently disabled. Raises in Medicare or our personal insurance have always eaten them up.
He smoked for one month, as a teen, but his lungs (and apparently several people in his family have problems) are shot. He has COPD; with emphysema and chronic bronchitis. His body also produces way too many histamines, so he has reactions to many things everything.
We had put off going to the food bank as long as we could, but with Thanksgiving this month, it was time.
What I didn’t expect was my reaction to going to the food bank.
I read the article in the paper wrong, first. So, we went during the two hours they were closed. The doors were open so I thought I could get the paperwork to fill out at home and come back.
So, instead of thirty-five people going through a line of “take one from shelf A, two from shelf B, etc. the woman had me sign a paper that our
income fit the Federal criteria, which it definitely does, and then she handed us a bag for food. Then, a box and some more bags as we threaded through the food shelf maze.
I was fine until she handed me a frozen turkey, I just broke out in tears. A grown woman, crying over a frozen turkey.
I don’t know why? I guess relief that we would be able to have a normal Thanksgiving for our boys, but, then I also cry at all of CNN’s reports of people who make a difference.
Things I have learned about food banks:
1. The people who work at them really care. Sometimes, it is hard to believe that anyone cares, but they do.
2. They are making the best of the world that they can. They run around and gather canned goods and whatever else local businesses will spare. They are so grateful for the donation of a freezer, they want our 19 year old to be sure and have a Christmas gift. They care that we have warm coats and chairs to sit on.
3. But, if I ever get wealthy, I’m making some specific donations that are along the line of if you teach a man to fish, only this is if you give him food to cook, he can serve more meals at home.
4. Things you don’t see at the food bank are staples of cooking:
e. Cheese: although we did get an industrial sized jalapeno cheese that has our nineteen year old eating nothing but tortilla chips and cheese this week. And, I do know that cheese is not generally considered a staple.
f. Ground Turkey would be a good alternative for meat.
But, I cannot tell you how thankful I am for these wonderful people who go out of their way for others.
P.S. I am still working on my vegan diet. I have some wheat flour left and picked up some black beans for black bean burgers, and I’m searching for new recipes for all the other beans I have collected.