Two years ago in February I put the offer in on the cabin at Hatzic Lake, I had started a new job, and the future was looking a lot brighter. I was perfectly happy to live in this little cabin for the rest of my days. Looking back I was still so very broken; I was not comfortable talking to people, I felt self-conscious and afraid I would say something stupid, I still talked about James a fair amount (but he kept creating trouble in my life so that kept him forefront in my mind). I kept to myself the first year, I took a lot of walks, did a lot of meditation, reading and breathing. I loved to look out my window at the lake, the herons and eagles soaring overhead.
So much has happened in those two years, I wasn’t even in my place a month when James managed to hack into my phone and tried to get me fired by placing an anonymous call to my boss, he was coming in here anonymously trying to discredit me and he called the management board where I live making anonymous complaints against me trying to get me evicted. I noticed I was very low energy and tired easily, my feet were so swollen I couldn’t wear most of my shoes, I was struggling to even go up a few stairs. I had just started my new job and thought I could “just push through it” but my body had different ideas and I had my second heart attack. I was able to get sick benefits through E.I. and then my brother hired me for a while and I was able to get unemployment insurance benefits for a little longer. I was still trying to keep the cabin but it began to look pretty doubtful.
I applied to receive funding to train to be a Life Skills Counselor and that was a joke, as some of you know, I have been living on welfare for almost a year which is $610/month and I get an extra $10/month because I have a heart condition. Whoopeee, I try to not spend it all in the same place. (sarcasm). I handed in my research and funding ap in November 2014 and my course was to start Jan 7th 2015. I found out I was denied in February, the reason I was denied was because it wasn’t in the regulation black binder. My worker had not done her job, my package sat on 3 different people’s desks and not one of them even read it, yet they denied me. February I had a new worker and I questioned her on why I was denied. When it became clear that no one had even read the funding application she set about helping me resubmit. I am really impressed with her efforts and have thanked her. I will be sending a letter to her supervisor expressing my appreciate this week. I had a new start date of April 7th, we submitted the 2nd funding application a few weeks ago and I was denied again. This time it is because the government will only pay $7500 towards education and my course is $10,000, the school said they would carry the $2500 and I could pay it $50 a month but the funding committee won’t go for it because I won’t get my diploma until it is paid in full. (I can see their point). I applied for a student loan and haven’t heard back.
Dealing with the government is an exercise in futility, they keep contradicting themselves, at one time they said I didn’t have enough money to go to school (that is why I was needing help) They wanted me to apply for jobs I have experience in but the reason I need to be retrained is because I can’t do those jobs any more. They said that the commuter train into Vancouver was too expensive and I should drive into Vancouver for school yet they won’t pay for my car insurance but they will pay $.25/km for me to drive which comes to $6500 for the duration of the course, the commuter train was going to cost $3350. Yeah I know, like my worker said and I quote her exactly. “They are so fucking stupid.”
So as it stands right now I will not be going to school in April and I can not fight it any more. I have wasted so much time working on this as it is and I have to find a way to make money. $620 just does not cut it, it is impossible to live on that. When I started out on that much I had a fair amount of supplies but everything is depleted now and I haven’t paid rent this month. I have steadily gotten further and further behind on my bills, my phone is way past due, my hydro is the same, and now I have to move by the April long weekend. I knew the move was inevitable but had hoped I would have gotten my funding for school and would be getting more money per month so I could rent a place or best case scenario I would have finished school and have a job.
My son is living about a 5 hour drive away in a small town called Oliver, which is a cute little town in a beautiful touristy area but he rents a tiny one bedroom cabin and there isn’t room for me.
I am starting to sell my furniture, I didn’t pay much for it and got some of it free off Craig’s list and refinished it. I love my table and china cabinet that I distressed but it is not worth paying storage charges on it. My girlfriend has offered to store some stuff in her basement, and come the first week of April I don’t know where I will be living. I could very well be in my car. I wish I had a holiday trailer or something, I would camp for the summer. I really can’t believe I am facing homelessness again. That is why I stayed as long as I did with James, I hoped to save enough money that I could rent a place but of course he kept sabotaging my truck and I left with $5 and my dog. I slept in my truck for a while and then got to live in a mobile home for a while. The thing is, once you have been that broken and been homeless, you don’t have a safety net, any little expensive can throw you right back, let alone I had another heart attack and then wasting all that time trying to get funding. I have opened my online store but there is no way that is going to get me over this hurdle.
I have avoided saying anything because, well for several reasons
1. I didn’t want to believe it, it is my greatest fear, being homeless.
2. I didn’t want people coming in here and thinking “Oh my God she has been out for 5 years and still isn’t back on her feet, what hope do I have or maybe they will think it is better to stay with their abuser. (it isn’t)
3. I was trying to stay positive, I really believed that eventually I would get the funding because it makes sense and I did such a bang up job on my application. I did my absolute best, they even said they had never had someone put the effort in that I had.
I can’t help but be thankful for the time I was here at the lake, I did so much healing while I was here and much more capable of dealing with this stress than I was when I came here. I don’t feel like a loser, or a lesser person for the position I am in because I know I have done everything within my power to improve my situation and it just didn’t come together for whatever reason. I trust God has a plan, it had better be a good one!!
I am giving you all a heads up that once I am out of here I won’t have the internet or anyway to afford it and will probably have to shut the blog down or at the very least shut off the ability to comment.
BTW I will be writing the head office of the company responsible for administering the funding program and I will be CCing my politicians and the newspaper. If the government is sincere about helping women leaving an abusive relationship they have a long ways to go because from what I have experienced, the reason I stayed still exists and if anything there is less help than there was 15 years ago.