Poverty Panic


Money stress hits once or more each month. It’s one of the many painful, preventable consequences of poverty. For me, it is physical.

I have anxiety disorder. While I can avoid shopping at busy times or going places I would feel anxious, I can’t avoid or escape poverty.

I try not to think about it. I hate spending money, because each time causes fear. Is there enough in my account? Will I regret this purchase later? Right now we both have the flu, but I could only justify buying cough medicine for him.

Later we will walk two miles while sick, to save about $7 in cab fare.

And that would be bearable except we have no money. My internet and phone and utility bills will all come due before I’m next paid.

Each time I remember, I gasp aloud. My heart races, my palms each, and I am overcome with the instinct to run.

When capitalism is the predator, there’s nowhereto run to. That stress somatizes and becomes nausea and inflammation.

How do you run from poverty?

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