Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Giving it to God (Or: The Truth in the Trite)

I'm hoping by writing this post, I'll be able to sleep tonight instead of staying awake worrying, which is what I do.

I'm worried about this family that I'm working with. The mom is doing so well - she's doing so much work (that is overdue, but better late than never) on repairing her relationship with her oldest child now living with her and on taking steps to get her papers to be legal in the US, to try and work out her kids' welfare benefits, to get her children's health and education taken care of, everything. And it's so much work.

She wants to work (she cleans houses) and can't find any work. None. I've tried and continue to try (she's a really good housecleaner!) but no one's paying for that right now. The promised welfare benefits are not coming and the social worker will not return calls. We've enlisted the help of a welfare lawyer, but that's going to take time. And time is what this family does not have right now.

Through the generosity of many friends and acquaintances as well as my church, the family's rent is paid through August 31. The social worker said that the benefits would be straightened out by then, giving her more money to work with, but that was before the social worker dropped off the face of the earth. Also, the mom was hoping to have work by then - and there's been no lack of trying - but that hasn't worked either. So the money runs out on August 31 and there's nowhere for them to live.

I want to fix this. They're a good family who are trying hard to make it and fix past mistakes and have had a lot of unfair obstacles in their way. But I can't. I can help them look for apartments, but she has no credit score. And even if they find an apartment, it will be a minimum of first month's rent and deposit, which will be $1600 at absolute minimum. I wish I had an extra $1600. But I don't.

I've done everything I can and this is where I have to give it to God, as trite as that sounds. There's a passage in the Bible (maybe in Isaiah?) where God says, "I am God and apart from me there is no Savior." If I believe that, it's time to believe it. God has provided so far - through my friends and family and church and random connections... and I have to believe God won't abandon this family now.

But I am not good at faith.

If you pray, please pray for a miracle for this family. If you don't pray - try it. no one will ever know and it certainly can't hurt. Thanks.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Back to School

This is the third year I'm not going back to school. I thought about trying to find a part-time teaching job for this school year but nothing came up and I got a lot more copy editing work, so I'm putting it off another year.

I'm finding myself in that stage where I remember only the good things so I get really nostalgic about teaching. Until I remember how tired I was. How very, very tired.

Things I miss about the beginning of school:
  • The excitement of getting my class list
  • Thinking about and praying for my new students
  • Buying school supplies
  • Labeling school supplies (I don't know why that's fun, but it is)
  • Laying out school supplies in their desks
Things I don't miss at all:
  • Getting up early
  • Having more kids in my classroom than I am legally allowed to have.
  • Having the class list change 17 times in the first two days
  • Not having all my supplies
  • Being told that I should be using x book even though I never got x book
  • Being treated like it is my fault I never got the books I needed even though I asked for them repeatedly
  • Having to clean the classroom because it didn't get cleaned during the summer cleaning
Teachers, feel free to join in.