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Thoughts Of Suicide

Confession: March 24th was going to be the end for me. Months with no car, pain, painful treatments, meds screwed up, isolated, low on cash...

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Strange Roadside Rescue

Few things scare me more than the prospect of being stranded on the side of the road, so I take as many precautions as I can to avoid this.. I pack blankets, a flashlight, snacks, water, an extra cell phone, charger and a first aid kit "just in case." But nothing can prepare me for or do much to assist me when I get a flat tire. I am pretty much at the mercy of Life.
It was just a little past sundown when I felt that left rear tire blow. Eric Clapton's "Layla" was playing on the radio and since I use that song as my personal 'everything's gonna be alright' song--I wasn't worried. It didn't matter that I was on the ten-mile stretch of country road known as 'Ailor Gap' or that cell phone service there was impossible. I wasn't worried. Sure, I was all alone on a 'road less traveled' but I wasn't worried. I'd be alright.
I guess I did what everyone does in that situation. I checked the trunk to make sure I had a spare tire that was in good condition and the jack I'd need to change the flat. Of course after I checked, I was in no better shape--I can't change a tire by myself! But still, I wasn't worried. I'd be alright.
I was getting cold, there was still a lot of snow on the ground from a few days ago and I was approximately three miles from what we call around here 'the main road' and cell phone service.
'So where should they find the body?' I thought. My dark humor was starting. Should it be found in the car with all my goodies or found on the road somewhere? That's when I saw him.
Great. "Body found in the car" it is.
Remember the Burt Reynolds's movie, "Deliverance"? Two so-called hillbillies descend from the woods in one scene before the infamous encounter with Ned Beatty. That is exactly what flashed in my mind when this figure appeared in my field of vision. I decided to pretend I hadn't noticed him because I was on the phone. He wouldn't know about the lack of service, right? This ruse was going to get me back in the car so I could lock it and allow me to seem completely unaware of his presence. He'd think I was calling for help. I'm a little worried. But I'd be alright.
I watched him come down the mountain, through the snow and grass while I spoke to nobody on a dead phone. He was the Grizzly Adams of 'The Walking Dead' complete with limp and he was headed my way. Whatever he was carrying in his left hand could easily smash the windows of my car if that's what he wanted to do with it. As he got closer, I noticed what he was carrying was a backpack. Great. He's carrying a 'kill kit.' I thought.
He came to my side of the car and without a visible tooth in his mouth said, "I'm gonna fix your 'tar,' okay?" Since I could pop the trunk safely from the inside, I did...and prayed.
After about fifteen minutes and remembering every self-defense class I'd ever taken, I noticed this strange man was now walking through the grass and back into the woods. He had changed the tire and went on his way without another word to or "Thank you" from me.
As I drove safely home, I wondered where "Mountain Man" lived, how had he seen me? Then another thought came to me. Why had he taken the chance and helped me?
I'm glad he wasn't as judgmental as I had been!

Monday, February 17, 2014

Perils of the Payday Loan

A couple of months ago, my mother received a check for $556.00 in the mail from a certain 'payday loan' company. While I can't excuse her, my mother's mental state and dementia told her the check  was the 'gift from God' she'd asked for so she got a friend to take her to the bank where she cashed it. I found out about this only after Mom started receiving the notices of her repayment schedule. She has to pay back 9 payments of $111.00 meaning she'll be paying a total of $999.00 on $556.00. I get it: Short term loans, high interest and high payback amount. Okay, she fell for it. We hear about it all the time. Elderly people are targets for things like this.
Mom decided she'd get a little bit ahead on her payments so she wrote one check for two payments or $222.00 on the due date. That's pretty bold for someone who only receives $702.00 in Social Security each month. Six days after the payment was received, she gets notified that her "check was returned." My mother has a checking account with overdraft protection so I thought she simply misunderstood. Well, we both misunderstood. How?
The company returned the check--not the bank. Mom didn't know the special previsions that they had set up for this situation. The company "does not accept" more than one payment at a time when paid by check. Why? Because this enables the company to use loopholes and the English language to get as much money as possible from her(and anyone else). I can't say that I would've thought to send two separate checks myself.
So Mom's check for $222.00 was returned to the neighborhood office as if it had never been paid. Then because now it is technically 'late,' they added a $20.00 late fee AND $36.00 for a 'returned to the office' fee. Now this comes to a $167.00 for EACH--yes, the payment due AND the payment she thought she was making to get ahead! Guess what? Yep, another $111.00 payment is due this month!Grand total? $445.00...and counting!
I'm expecting legal threats to come at her at anytime.
I must confess that I really didn't see the harm in "payday loan" places in commercials I've seen on television. But I didn't realize that some of these places send out checks in hopes of them being cashed. It's brilliant actually because if the customer complains, the company rep can just smile and say, "Well they shouldn't have cashed the checks!" It is the perfect plan.
Reminds me of a fisherman who baits the hook just hoping they'll get a bite so they can 'reel that sucker in.' That is certainly what they got with my mother--a sucker. Hook, line and sinker.

Thursday, February 6, 2014


Jesse and my cousin Lisa were married three years when they adopted two beautiful little girls. The girls were sisters with one being a special needs child. In my opinion, Jesse and Lisa rescued those two and gave them the best home possible. Both were educated, professional adults with all the love in the world to give children. Something changed.
Lisa began to want 'a real child' with her husband. To me, it seemed like she was attempting to save or improve her marriage in some way but what did I know? This led to IVF, hormone treatments and a lot of expense. When Lisa did finally become pregnant, her happiness seemed strained. Then one day, Lisa told her mother that she caught Jesse in the den getting the eleven year old girl drunk. The child had passed out in fact. Soon after that, Lisa discovered and reported a molestation. Jesse was removed from the home and the law got involved.
Lisa had all the love and family support anyone could ever hope to have. She wouldn't have to worry about being a divorced mother raising two daughters and a newborn son alone because all of us were ready, willing and able to do whatever, whenever. That is why what she did was so shocking.
Lisa stood by Jesse throughout all the legal procedures. Even though they are eleven and thirteen now, Lisa gave the girls back to DHS because she was determined to be with Jesse and raise 'their son' together..."as a family." We have no idea what happened to the girls or where they are now.
Lisa turned her back on our side of the family and her own mother has never held her now eight month old grandson. I used to have Lisa as a Facebook friend but I have grown to hate all her photos featuring her, Jesse and that innocent little baby with her posts about how "God gave her the most perfect husband." I just don't have the stomach for it anymore.
I know I am 'not supposed to judge' because I don't know what really 'goes on behind closed doors' but to me, what she did is almost the worst thing I've ever heard anyone doing. How could she see what she reported and still "stand by her man"? To me, she blamed the victim. In regards to the girls and as an abandoned child myself, I cannot imagine the pain of being adopted at age three then "returned" for any reason. I never dreamed Lisa was capable of this. Disgusting.
Have you ever felt that way about a family member?
Could you separate the person from the deed? I can't seem to love the person but hate what they did.
 I am certainly not "without sin," but "casting the first stone" seems the least that I could do. I fear that if I ever spoke to her again she'd think I condone what she did and even that, for me would be unforgivable.
I guess I'm incapable of "unconditional love."