As of midnight, October 1, the United States Government shut down. My twitter feed and to a lesser extent my Facebook feed was talking about nothing else. Well, actually, let me revise that. My Milspouse friends were talking almost nothing else. I find that my milspouse friends are some of the most politically aware friends that I have. Most other people seemed clueless that it was going to happen. I wonder, are they unconcerned because it doesn’t affect them or their loved ones or maybe they don’t know anyone who is affected?
Well, allow me to introduce myself. I’m Poe, and I’m married to The Man and we have one adorable little girl, Munchkin. I’m a Stay-At-Home-Mom by choice, because we want one of us to be the one taking care of our little girl. The Man works full time as a DOD civilian. This is a good job, with decent pay and good benefits. The Man enjoys his job which is more than we can say for his last year in the Navy. This means that we have one income. It’s enough to cover our expenses and we live within our means. We’re doing our best to pay off our debt.
The government shutting down means The Man doesn’t go to work because they don’t have any money to pay him with. So we have no paycheck. No paycheck equals no income and no way to pay our bills, our mortgage, buy gas for the cars, buy FOOD! We have a little savings but we recently had to use some of it and haven’t gotten to replace it all yet. So this no paycheck thing is going to be hard. Very hard. Companies want the money we owe them, and rightly so. I hate paying things late but it’s hard when you have no choice.
Actually, I have to take part of that previous paragraph back. The Man went into work on Tuesday like he was supposed to, to take part in the orderly shutdown of the government. When he got there he was surprised to find out that his shop is considered exempt, meaning that they have been deemed essential. Essential to what? The current mission of the US Navy. So he gets to continue to go to work and he won’t get paid until a deal is reached and there is money again. So the good news is that he should get paid retroactively and the bad news is like everyone else, we have no paycheck coming in at the moment. Don’t get me wrong, I’m thankful that we should get money eventually, that he’s still earning leave and that our health insurance is still in place. (Even though it will be going up $1200 next year. So much for Obamacare, right?!?!?) It’s just scary to not know how you’re going to buy food and pay your bills.
We’re not the only ones affected. There are thousands of people in the US that are feeling the impact of the shut down. I wonder, are those in Congress so far removed that they don’t realize that this is going to affect many of the people in their districts? I don’t want to get into politics and I blame both parties and both houses of Congress as well as the President. I’m praying that it doesn’t long but honestly, I’m not too hopefully. We’ll be ok for a little while but if this drags on, we will be in a difficult position. Even with the promise of pay eventually, we’ll still have late fees that will cost us extra. My heart hurts for those that have no promise of pay while they aren’t working. How are they going to meet their obligations and pay for necessities like food? This is hurting a lot of people and the slowly recovering economy isn’t going to take to kindly to it either.
So, do you have any recipes for Rice & Beans that you’d care to share with me? I think I might need them!
Are you being affected by the Shutdown? How?