Disabled Deputy Sheriff And Single Dad Seeks To Restore Financial Stability
by John L Gulledge
(Molino, FL, USA)
Me with My Kids
I never thought that I would end up here, and that's a fact. I am a 48-year-old man, who is now a full-time daddy.
I have two small children. My son is now 9 and my baby angel girl is 7. I got started late on being a father, but it's the best thing (next to God's Salvation) that has ever happened to me.
I'm a lifelong lawman. I started in the reserves when I was 18 years old, and shortly after that went full-time.
I spent 23 and a half years doing what I loved, which is helping people. Law enforcement was my life, and I conducted myself accordingly off duty as well as on.
This is the only thing in life I ever wanted. From the time I was only 5 years old, I knew I would be a lawman one day. I stuck with that idea, and at 18 my dreams started to come true.
I had a great life in law enforcement. One morning getting up, I noted a difference in me physically. It started with numbness in my right ear. Later it spread until it had my whole right side numb.
I went to the doctor at that point, and long story short I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Soon after that I was taken off the road, which in itself was a horrible blow to me, because even with almost 24 years I was NOT ready to retire.
I hated working the desk, but tried it and found out my physical limitations, as well as the horrible fatigue that comes with MS. It got the best of me. I was forced to retire.
My son was 3 years old at the time, and my daughter was 14 months old. My wife, and partner in life decided she didn't want to be a wife, or mother any more, and she left us.
At that time I was pretty much paralyzed on the right side of my body. Luckily, God graced me with true grit in that hour of need, and we pressed on.
I now have most of the use back in my right side. My elderly momma, and daddy were here to help me tend to my babies, and help with finances as much as they could.
God knows I love my folks. My dear daddy has gone on to be with The Lord since this, and my momma still does what she can to help.
So here I am, a lifelong deputy sheriff, and a daddy, and although I love and appreciate my life, it still has its struggles.
Finances are a wreck. I can no longer work, I can no longer work a side job, bills are every month and I'm falling behind slowly, but surely.
I've never asked for help, but it sure would be nice to afford to buy new shoes for the babies now and then, and at least take them out for a hamburger.
Please know that I do so very much trust in The Lord to fulfill our needs, and to this date, He has supplied our daily bread. I'm not great at asking for help, but this is my life, and I need a little help.
I am 100% disabled. I was diagnosed with MS multiple sclerosis, and was forced into retirement. I've been living with MS now for a little over 6 years, and am somewhat stable, although daily life is a struggle.
I applied for my social security disability, and was approved. What a blessing that was.
I now receive a small monthly income from my FL state retirement. I also receive social security for being disabled. Both checks together are not all that much when you have two small children to feed, and tend to.
Groceries are so expensive that they've become a luxury! I have medicine(s) each month, mortgage, a car payment and utilities.
Cooling wasn't that hard to pay this HOT summer because our a/c was broken. I still haven't been able to fix that, but the upside was that my electric bill was smaller.
After robbing Peter to pay Paul every month over and over, things are adding up. There is just not enough money to make it pay check to pay check. I need to ease this load just a little.
Other than my small FL state retirement check and my social security, I have no other means of earnings.
I've never attempted a grant before, and have not reached out to people. I think it's a pride issue at best. I'm 100% disabled and cannot work.
My specific need is to obtain some type of lump sum, enough to at least get my car paid for. At that point, I can drop full coverage insurance, and the car payment will be gone, so that will save me over $600 a month.
If I can at least get that bill off me, I can build slowly with my income. I won't be in such a penny counting strain to buy a loaf of bread, and I mean that literally.
So a grant for the disabled, or whatever help I might be lucky enough to get would be great. Like I said, I'm not great at asking for this type help.
I have never done ANYTHING like this, and although it's somewhat an embarrassing thing, I have to swallow that pride, and think about my family.