Sunday, April 22, 2007

Money...money...money



"Money doesn't matter

This usually is said

By somebody well-housed

Well-dressed, well fed"

So goes the old rhyme.

Disturbing conversation with my brother today. The man is 74 years old, and has just suddenly lost his wife of four decades to lung cancer spread to her brain. It wasn't even diagnosed until two weeks before the end, though she had complained of chest pains as long as six years ago.

He's very strong, her children are very kind, and he's doing OK. Yes, he wakes in the night hearing her breathing beside him, starts up, turns on the light, and, oh yes, she's gone. Yes, he works at his desk hearing her reading behind him on the sofa, but when he turns, oh yes, she's gone.

Blessed God that is enough for any one to have to deal with. But alas, $$$ also rear their ugly heads, or rather, they don't, because there aren't enough of them around to. Without her pensions and Social Security, he now struggles to live on less than one-third of what used to come in. Any help from social programs? No, they've ruled he only needs $550 a month to live on. In urban California???

He is proudly doing OK for now. And I am glad. But oh, so aware of the large percentage of us gray-hairs who live hand-to-mouth, with shaky hands, and periodontal disease.

1 comment:

ms. kitty said...

Juffie, I'm sorry to hear about your brother's struggles. It is so hard to second-guess the future and do the best we can to survive.

I did want you to know how much I appreciate your thoughts, both on the chat and the blog, which I know come out of the depth of your experience.

Because of my appreciation, I have nominated your blog as a "Thinking" Blog. You can see more on Ms. Kitty's

 
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