I Was a Phone Call Away From Being a Bag Lady

  by Betsy Otter Thompson

I Was a Phone Call Away From Being a Bag Lady Obviously, I was not in a good place when this happened; I was struggling to survive. But rather than bore you with the details of how I found myself in such a predicament, I want to share the miracle that happened because of it. The situation was such that, if I didn’t receive help in twenty-four hours, I was going to be using my car as a home.

What I thought was the letting go of every last shred of pride I had – the process of asking for financial help from my estranged mother – became a process of reconnecting; not always in ways that made her comfortable with me, but always in ways that made me comfortable with myself. Our reconnection was by no means perfect, but where previously there had been no communication; there was at least some. My reaching out didn’t change the way she treated me, but it changed the way I treated myself. The fact that I paid her back as much as I could every single month – come hell or high water – didn’t give her a positive attitude regarding my path, but it gave me a positive attitude.

I thought this situation was the final and worst humiliation of my life, but it turned out to be the beginning of its rebuilding.