When I am not in control of a bad situation, I do not feel dull or sick, I feel frustrated and angry and sometimes scared. The last time I felt helpless was during a tornado. The power went out and I couldn’t see what was going on through the small basement windows. I heard thumping noises against the house and then a crash and rattle. I imagined my house was being torn apart and there was nothing I could do to prevent it. I could do nothing about it: I was helpless. It turned out well for us, however. Hail, we’re guessing made the thumping noises and a tree branch struck the deck which is attached to the house. For whatever reason, when a branch hits the deck it sounds as if the whole wall is coming down, vibrates loudly throughout the house.
When you are helpless there is nothing you can do about it, that’s why you are helpless. Doing nothing about a difficult situation, however, is very stressful. Most people vent; they talk about it without someone or write it down. There are a few souls that believe that venting, ranting, is futile. Not truth. Venting releases stress. It provides a feeling of doing something, or recognizing the situation despite our helplessness. The other person needs only to listen.
There are some situations where a soul is not helpless, they only feel that way. Bad financial decisions or bad relationships can leave us feeling as if we have nowhere to go. My first marriage was not what I had hoped it would be. For too long I stayed and suffered in silence or on paper. It wasn’t until I became frustrated to the point of anger, to the point where that anger rose higher than my fear of the man, before I was able to see a path out. I would have left the marriage much sooner had I a place to run. No one offered and I never asked. I had never asked for anything. Asking for help is what helped put me on a good path.
I was expecting our third child when the marriage ended. He wasn’t working, we didn’t have a place to live and he didn’t seem to care about either. I applied for welfare and received a modest amount. I took what they gave and ran. When our third child turned two and was old enough for daycare, I went to college on grants and a small student loan. I met a new man who is perfect for me. After earning a degree, I dropped the welfare with a smile and a ‘thank you,’ and went to join the working class. Together, we went from zero to $60,000 in only a few years. It wasn’t given to me, I earned it. Today, I have a new home, a new relationship, and a new life because the government was willing to help where my own family didn’t.
Soapbox moment: I tried to find an image that depicted a family being assisted by government aid, but the internet is infested with ridicule and hate on this issue. I take this moment to remind people not to kick those that are down and suffering. Most welfare recipients are not drug users with a fancy car, they are displaced families that do not own a vehicle. Stomping these people into the ground does nothing to help build the confidence they need to get back on their feet. Before you laugh at the next welfare joke, think a moment: What would you do? You suddenly lose your income and your home. How do you feed your children, where do you find shelter? What if someone gets sick?