To the Woman Behind Me in Line at the Grocery Store

Dear woman behind me in line at the grocery store,

You don’t know me. You have no clue what my life has been like since October 1, 2013. You have no clue that my family has gone through the wringer. You have no clue that we have faced unbelievable hardship. You have no clue we have been humiliated, humbled, destitute.
You have no clue I have cried more days than not; that I fight against bitterness taking control of my heart. You have no clue that my husband’s pride was shattered. You have no clue my kids have had the worries of an adult on their shoulders. You have no clue their innocence was snatched from them for no good reason. You know none of this.

What you do know is I tried to buy my kids some food and that the EBT machine was down so I couldn’t buy that food. I didn’t have any cash or my debit card with me. I only had my SNAP card. All you heard was me saying “No, don’t hold it for me. My kids are hungry now and I have no other way of paying for this.” You didn’t judge me. You didn’t snarl “Maybe you should have less kids.” You didn’t say “Well, get a job and learn to support yourself.” You didn’t look away in embarrassment or shame for me. You didn’t make any assumptions at all.

What you did was you paid that $17.38 grocery bill for us. You gave my kids bananas, yogurt, apple juice, cheese sticks, and a peach ice tea for me; a rare treat and splurge. You let me hug you and promise through my tears that I WILL pay this forward. I WILL pay someone’s grocery bill for them. That $17.38 may not have been a lot for you, but it was priceless to us. In the car my kids couldn’t stop gushing about you; our “angel in disguise.” They prayed for you. They prayed you would be blessed. You restored some of our lost faith. One simple and small action changed our lives. You probably have forgotten about us by now, but we haven’t forgotten about you. You will forever be a part of us even though we don’t even know your name.

You have no clue how grateful and embarrassed I am that we pay for all our food with SNAP. We eat well thanks to the government. I love that. I love that the government makes sure my kids are cared for. It is one less worry for us. I also struggle with pride and embarrassment. I defiantly tell people we are on SNAP. Daring them to judge us.

Only those closest to us know why we are on SNAP. They know my husband is a hard worker who was laid off after 17 years in a management position with his former company. They know we were moved from our home to a new state only to be left homeless since the house we had came with the job he lost. Only those closest to us know my husband works part time while looking tirelessly for more; that he has submitted more applications than he has received interviews for. Too many jobs are only offering part time work anymore. It is not easy for a 40-something year old to find a job that will support his family of 5 kids.

You know none of this but you didn’t let that stop you from being compassionate and generous to someone you have never met.

To the woman behind me at the grocery store, you have no idea how much we appreciate you. You have no idea the impact you had on my kids. You have no idea how incredibly thankful I am for you. Your action may have been small, but to us it was monumental. Thank you.

Thank you for not judging us. Thank you for giving my kids a snack when they were quite hungry. Thank you. Just thank you.

Forever,
Andrea, the woman in front of you at the grocery store with the cart full of kids who are no longer hungry
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**UPDATE** Mark got a full time job in the state we call home. He is there now and we will join him once he finds us a home. Thank you all for your prayers and kind words.

 

1,092 thoughts on “To the Woman Behind Me in Line at the Grocery Store

  1. Sitting here with tears in my eyes. I know firsthand what you’re going through. We lost our home and everything we owned to a tornado in March 2012. Our house was paid for and we had no insurance (stupid I know). FEMA helped out some but we had to go in debt to rebuild. In May 2012 my husband lost his very good paying job in the coal industry. He searched everywhere and couldn’t find anything. Then my son lost his welding job. My other son has a welding degree but with the coal going under in our area, he couldn’t find anything. So that leaves just me working. It finally came down to paying a bill or buying food. No matter how hard I tried I couldn’t earn enough to do both. My husband and sons took every odd job they could find but it still wasn’t enough to cover everything. So I finally had to sign up for help. That’s when I realized we had hit rock bottom. I was so ashamed to go to the grocery store. I was so afraid people would talk about us. I mean here we are living in a nice new house and getting SNAP. But I had the sweetest case worker. She said its not shameful to ask for help. A month ago my husband found a job. Making about half of what he used to make, but we’re not complaining. My oldest son also found a really good job. It was a good day the day I called and told them we no longer needed SNAP. We’re slowly getting back on our feet. Your story really touched my heart. Hang in there. I know good things are coming your way!

  2. I am a midwest girl who found her home in the east so I feel you. I can tell from your post that you give your kids your heart – and that is what they need from you. Someday they will look back on the troubled times and know that both their parents did what was in their power to do. My husband’s family went through bankruptcy when he was an adolescent, and the experience created both a drive and a compassion that make him who he is today. Hug your kids and let them know that this time of little does not define them (or you!) – it is a period you will make it through and will someday be a source of strength. They are blessed to have a mom who has the ability to express gratitude so beautifully. But (since I’m a realist!) I know it must be REALLY hard sometimes as you go through it — try to keep your head up and count your blessings every day. I send good ju ju your way – you deserve to be out of the stress of worrying about money!

  3. You seem like a more then genuine person and showing how appreciative you were, and showing how much of a change something like this could make in someones life, has inspired me to do something similar myself, god bless.

  4. Andrea,

    First of all, thank you for sharing this story. I’m so sorry for all the negative comments and criticism of judgmental people.

    I have a similar story. I’m a single mom of 3. I went on assistance (welfare, SNAP, Medi-Cal) last October. I had a very stable and good paying career for 19 years, but was forced to quit in 2009 due to an injury. I lived off my thrift savings for awhile. Then I married a man I thought was my Prince Charming. He had a great job and benefits and provided for me and my kids. But he wasn’t who I thought he was and the marriage ended last year, leaving me with no income and no food for my family. At first I was so ashamed to apply for public assistance, but it’s been such a blessing. I can buy food for my kids, we all have medical care now, and even financial aid for me to go back to college.

    So keep your head up, whip that EBT card out proudly, and don’t let anyone make you feel less than the beautiful wonderful amazing woman God created you to be!

    Praying for you! Feel free to keep in touch lara43ferris@gmail.com

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  8. Love when people do generous things for no other reason but to be generous. Thank you for sharing. Also, I have resume-writing and job-search training experience for those in management positions. If your husband wants fresh eyes on his resume, cover letter and job search strategy (for free), please reach out to me. Would be happy to try and help you guys out.

  9. Pingback: Pay it forward, people. | Christian Minimalist

  10. This is an amazing story and I have so much respect for your candor! It is such a compliment that GoGURT is a special treat in your household. Yoplait would like to send a care package – would that be okay? We truly think the world is a better place because of people like you who write and share their stories. Could you send an email to yoplait.social@genmills.com with your full name, mailing address, phone and email?

    Thanks,
    Yoplait Sara

  11. Hi , I don’t know you either, and thank you for your voice and your feelings, and for casting your appreciation to the wind, so to speak. I touched a whole lot more than one person, even of that person never sees this. “Stay visible” is one of my mantras, to speak out on the good AND the bad, so as not to let our distress echo society’s. Let me dedicated to you my first poem, posted on my old website a while ago when I was in Dallas corresponding w a death row inmate – um not drawing comparisons, I just thought my message echoes yours, to each our own ways to speak up (it was also posted on a UK poetry site that was brout down thru guv cutbacks, thank God I kept ye olde website up LOL). Thank you from Cambridge UK
    http://www.zolnai.ca/old/deathrowspeaks.htm

  12. There is a reason for this having occurred; a similar experience happened to me as well. It was so systematically executed / carried out / engineered that there is no chance (in my mind) of it having been random, or bad luck, poor planning, or any oddly ‘deserved’ endup of this state; it had *nothing* to do with what you did, didn’t do, should have done, could have done or would have done had you seen it coming; it had nothing to do with anything within your control. This didn’t happen for anything you did or didn’t do, and this eventuality, believe it or not, while extremely taxing, challenging, discouraging, apparently hopeless and out the window unlikely to ever have taken place in your worse nightmares (if one had the extreme imagination for such a blindswiped downward spiral of relentless events), please remember this:

    It is *not* your fault. It didn’t happen because of anything you did or deserve, and most importantly? It is TEMPORARY. Once this restructuring is completed, for the great many people also being blindsided in exactly the same way, the stress, the anxiety, the abject lack of peace of mind you have felt all of your life will be replaced with a much, much better manner of living. Compassionate, never abandoned, always valued, respected without fear of misstep, and genuine trust in a good, beautiful world growing up and embracing your every thought, movement and hope.

    Please read these words. And read them again. And again.

    This is temporary, it’s not a punishment, it’s not an unending fall of misfortune; it’s been engineered to happen — to all of us. It’s a deconstruction of systems, standards and methods that have been long waiting to be upgraded, replaced and repaired. It has to do with human despair, human dissatisfaction, human fears, human vulnerabilities, and a previous lack of genuine compassion, love and protection. Your life is about to change, in ways unimaginable; and first, the present life needs to be deconstructed, very painful and unnerving, so that it will be rebuilt (and it *will* be reconstructed) to accommodate your needs, hopes, peace of mind, health, happiness and a life of glowing days of contentment, safety, respect and abundance.

    It’s temporary. And it’s nearly over.

    Hang in there.

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  14. I’m also from the Midwest, Chicago. I read your article on Yahoo about the Woman Behind You in Line at the Grocery Store. I was so touched by it. I worked for an international law firm for 23 years and was laid off last May. It almost killed me. I support myself and I was not prepared for this. I know how it feels to not have money for groceries and how its the “little things” that mean the most. I think that was amazing what that person did for you & your family. My friends have done nice things for me so a stranger doing something is amazing. I wanted to share an experience with you. I work for this amazing company called Origami Owl. I don’t know if you’ve heard of it but it has mostly women that work with them. Its a direct sales company and they sell jewelry. It has taken off so that in 2 yrs. it has become the #1 highest grossing direct sales business in the world. It has beat out Avon, Mary Kay and Tupperware. I share this because many of the women at Origami Owl are just like you. They are working from home and earning extra money to help their families. The lockets tell a story and everybody loves them. They have brought me much joy and to the countless women that have been touched by this. You seem like the kind of person that could succeed at this and the kind of person I’m looking for to join my team. Please check out my website at locketin.origamiowl.com. I know you will enjoy it.

  15. It really makes me angry when people judge people for doing the best that they can with there circumstances. I know the one thing that angers me the most is someone that once was in the same place in there life for awhile and forget that they too had to do what they had to do so they could feed there kids, and they turn around and because they are in a better place know they look down on people. I am on disability, I have worked all my life and never thought I would be living on such little money. I am ashamed cause I don’t have enough money at the end of the month but I know that I am ok and I know I would never judge my fellow peer. I really hope that you are doing good and that God is always by your side. Never be ashamed of a situation that can not be helped.

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  17. I know i am there to the only way i can feed my kids is what i get from churches and they don’t give much so i will go with out eating at times but my kids amd mom do

  18. Please don’t say you eat well because of the government. We work hard and some of the money we earn goes to buy that food for you. You the person in a crisis is who we want that money to go to. We are happy to help those who truly need it. But sadly the government gets the credit. We have to be very careful with every dollar we earn and often don’t have anything extra to hand you in person at the checkout because the government has taken that privilege away from us. But they are NOT the ones who deserve the thanks.

    • You know what Tami? You are right.

      People do work hard and then their money is taken for taxes and taxes fund these programs. Both my husband and I have worked hard and paid into the system for years (him longer than me, but still). In fact, my husband is working a minimum wage part time job right now. So he is paying taxes into a program that is currently helping us until we can get back onto our feet. Yes, they know he works part time.

      When I say the government is taking care of us, I do not mean to negate the fact that hard working people pay into that system. It is just that the government decides how the program is run, who gets what, and all the other intricate details that ensue. Because of that I tend to say that it is the government who is helping. Does that make sense as to why I said it that way?

      Anyway, I apologize. I mean no harm nor do I negate the fact that this country is full of hard working people who support the fact that THEIR money is being used to help others in need.
      That said, Tami, thank you. Thank you for you hard work. I will try to pick my words better next time.

      Peace.

      • You owe no explanation! I mever comment on these types of things… I merely click to read the articles. And with tears in my eyes I scrolled down to the comments afterwards in hopes that someone out there put into words what i was thinking. That someone, somewhere offered you encouragement and prayer. That surely in your time of need there was more than one person out there who could help restore your faith. And through the positivity I came across this comment, and although im sure it wasn’t meant in the manner in which it came across, it almost seemed like they wanted some kind of recognition…
        Please dont forget that your family paid into the system for at least 17 years (Given the time you stated your husband was employed with his company) and for 17+ years your family helped to provide groceries to many hungry children and treat many stressed and worried mothers to a much needed and deserved peach tea. That by paying your taxes and sometimes not being able to assist the family im front of you, you without knowing it, did.
        It is a very tough time out there. Up until 4 months ago I was a single mother of two boys. Who understood what it was like to stress about providing lights or dinner. And through prayer, and Gods graces I made it. And you will, too.
        Im not very good at this kind of thing and usually that is why I just read…. but I wanted to say thank you. Thank you for keeping your faith. Thank you for paying into the system, thank you for being so humble that you shared this story, thank you for continuing to make your children the priority. And most of all, thank you for being such a strong positive role model for them. To let them know that tough times won’t last, but tough people do.
        And showing such class in response to the lady who left the comment that started all of this.
        I hope you know that you are pretty bad ass and although your circumstances aren’t the best right now, somehow someway they’ll get better. Even if it is for no other reason than your pure endurance (which I can tell you have because of your adamant gesture of paying it forward).
        I hope you get your break soon. Please know that I will pray for your family. I will pray for your situation. I will pray for you to be able to swipe that card and realize that not everyone is behind you judging, and to those who do, well, those kind of people need prayer… but, above all else, I will pray for you to stay strong and keep your faith. May God bless you and yours.

  19. I understand what you and your family are experiencing right now. I was laid off from the most wonderful job I’d ever had, the pay and benefits were amazing. That was in 2008, I couldn’t get unemployment from the state because I had left my previous job on my own free will and Colorado is a no fault state, after a few months I was able to get federal unemployment and snap for me and my son. I hadtoo file bankruptcy, I had almost no debt other then car, condo, a 2nd mortgage and a few small medical bills. By 2010 I finally found minimal part time work, couldn’t pay the mortgage. Made I think I made 3 payment in that time. In September of 2011 I was offered a full time job where I was working part time but wouldn’t start until middle of November (by the time the job staarted I was 11 days short of 3 years without full time work)… The house sold in short sell in September. My son and I packed all our belongings in a storage unit and stayed with my mom in a 1 bd, 1 bath apt 700 sqft for 5 weeks. And was 40 mins away from my son’s school. During all this hardship, I too was blessed like you were. Many of my mother’s clients and family friends would give us gift cards to the grocery store, cash etc. Those acts of kindness touch your heart in such a way no one could ever understand unless they lived it. I always said they are my Angels on earth. I’m sending you positive energy that everything turns around for you and your family very soon. If I can do anything to help your husband find a job, let me know. I’m in Colorado, but have connections in Maryland and Corona California with my company. I work for a big HMO health care company. Wishing you the best. I promise it will all come together.

    • On your commentary about the health care industry, am looking for work, wouldn’t mind moving to Colorado or any state, am a single mother of 3, i currently live in GA, been divorced for 4 years, been looking for work since then, am in my early 30s, I have a bachelor of science degree, I need help and a sense of direction, i struggled to pay school fees until last year, when I totally ran out of funds, my children now goes to a public school that is underfunded, they don’t like the school, am now struggling to get in the job market, so at least my children can get a sound education. God bless you A Midwest Yankee, and your family, may God grant your family with upmost peace in all your endeavors, your story just hit me straight in the heart, I’ll keep you and your family in my prayers and please pray for me that find employment soon before new school year starts. Love you

      • A Wilson,
        Can you shoot me an email. i want to help you out. I want to make sure that you get in touch with people who can help because I understand exactly where you are at! truestoriesofamidwestyankee @ gmail (dot) com

  20. hi, maybe someone can help make your case known to the Ellen Show ? the show seems to help out quite a number of families so maybe worth a try ?

  21. Thank you for sharing your story. There are so many that are in similar situations that need hope and encouragement that God will make a way! Having previously experienced loss of everything as well, I can truly say we truly experience a transformed life and a new perspective on things. You will make it! I pray for you/ your family’s peace, health, well being, purpose and every need met! Be blessed!

    • I agree. Too many are in the same position we are in. It breaks my heart. I wish I could wave a magic wand and make it better for everyone, but through suffer we learn, grow, and gain strength

  22. I applaud both the woman who paid the grocery bill and the family for being grateful….It is rare today to see people who receive with true graciousness. I give whenever I can because I know what it is like to have nothing and I believe in my heart in order to see a change you have to be the change. I wish love and light to all involved.

  23. I work for Social Services, where SNAP benefits are managed. I know thousands of stories of how decent, hard working, well-intentioned people find themselves in situations they never imagined being in because of the economy, illness, injury, mental health, divorce/separation/death of a breadwinner, natural disaster or other personal woes. There but for the grace of God goes any one of us who live paycheck to paycheck, month to month. So tired of all of the rhetoric about how food stamp and welfare recipients are lazy, drug/alcohol abusing good for nothings. Believe me- I have come to know plenty of those people, but the majority I have encountered in my 30 years are good folks who weren’t able to outrun that bullet so many others in this country are trying to stay ahead of. Bless the woman who shared her compassion with you and bless you for sharing your experience with us. It couldn’t have been easy to be in the spot you were in or to accept what was offered. It takes a big heart to offer with love and another big heart to accept what is given in love. What a beautiful lesson for your children!

    • Thank you Melissa! We adore our case worker. The hard work to make sure we get what we qualify for, making sure we understand everything, giving us other options when certain things don’t pan out. We really appreciate the work of office.
      We are thankful we had so many years where we were able to contribute into this program. I know we will be on the up and up soon. 🙂

      • HAHA gotcha! Answer to #4: Putting it back without the PayPal link and PO BOX doesn’t change anything.

      • You didn’t “get” anything. Everything is still accessible. I just asked for emails instead in order to track things better so people can be properly thanked as needed if needed.
        You are incredibly brave considering you don’t know everything. We always turn in everything we have to turn in to those we are accountable to.

      • Answer for everything. As a Private Investigator, not federal, and since you are not one of my cases, I can question whatever I choose on a public forum. And in my honest opinion, there are many questions concerning your situation. Good luck!

      • You didn’t “get” anyone Brenda. And in fact if anyone was “gotten” it was you pretending to be someone and something you aren’t. Again, read #11. You continue to make the case against yourself and I would personally instruct this person that they could and should pursue legal action against you if you continue in your course of illegal and fraudulent behavior. Proof of which she actually has unlike your accusations which you have no proof of.

        This woman wrote a story on her blog. It was picked up nationally. People offered help that she did not ask for. For all you know and have proof of, she has taken the necessary steps to report money as she is legally bound to. Yet you publically make accusations of things you have no proof of and then try to give them credibility by claiming to be someone you are not (a fraud investigator). You are nothing more than a fear monger and bully as aforementioned in my previous reply. If you claim otherwise then feel free to list all the real proof you have that would actually be used in court. Remember, “because I said so.” isn’t legal proof.

        Do you have proof the story was taken down for the reason you claim?
        Do you have proof that this woman isn’t reporting her money as she should?
        Do you even have proof that you are in fact a fraud investigator as you claim?

      • And where would Ms. Gardner get the money to peruse an attorney? All words are my honest opinion, Ms. Gardner changed her story after she was questioned about the PayPal link.

      • I never changed my story. The words may be slightly different but the meaning is the same. I simply added a step in how people can contact me should they want to.

    • Ask Andrea why she deleted her story “The Elephant in the Room” with a link to a PayPal account and PO BOX accepting donations to of money to her family? Is it possible she didn’t claim these donations as income, and pay her taxes. By deleting the story she sent up red flags as I’m a fraud investigator, and I have contacted the USDA (SNAP) and the IRS to check her out.

      • In response to your wild accusations I would like to point out the following:

        1. The story is still there

        2. There are many “possible” reasons the story may not have been up for a short time

        3. Your questions are meant to imply that your opinion is the truth and are not as innocent and from a place of concern as you would have others believe

        4. If I am wrong about number three, then why did you not list any of the plethora of other possibilities as to why the story was not there?

        5. Since the PayPal account was just created this year, no money would be claimed as income until next year when we file taxes for money earned in 2014

        6. People are allowed to receive up to $10,000 per year as a “gift”. This is even explained by PayPal as you set up these types of accounts. Any money up to that amount would be reported as a gift not income

        7. The facts concerning “gifts” and when and how money would be reported on taxes would surely be known by a real fraud investigator

        8. A real fraud investigator would not make public accusations such as these and would in fact investigate the facts to find out if this person had violated any laws then address that privately and legally

        9. Is it possible that Brenda Jean Allen is in fact pretending to be something and someone she isn’t?

        10. Is it possible that she is nothing more than a fear monger who is trying to bully this person and others?

        11. Internet bullying is a crime. So is impersonating a federal officer.

      • I would just like to point out that gift money is seen differently per state and possibly per county….using spend downs etc per regulation (this might only apply to medical, though here they look at both at the same time and I just do what I am told). Each recipient has 10 days to report ANY change in income or resources. The IRS and reporting gift income is another separate issue. Each recipient is instructed in this, and signs, so claiming ignorance is not bliss. I pointed this out before and I wished that direction would be heeded to prevent loss of needed benefit or welfare fraud issues.

        As to Brenda, anyone can ask for donations for any thing. I think that is odd. Therefore, I do not do it nor use it. Anyone can do a sob story and move anyone else to be supportive in various ways. Heck, some can even do it with cancer and weddings to intimate family members. There will never be an ultimate stamp of rightness. If I seek one, I will spend my life running about tattling and telling others what to do, often in my case causing me not to see my own stuff that needs attending first.

        It isn’t so much the job of the poster or the thanker of the person in line who covered some food items, to put all of the laundry and private financial information out here for all of us to see. Perhaps if said site is closed, said poster heard from myself, other recipients, or other state, county, or federal agencies the same direction and a choice was made to close it…simply to avoid creating fraud, simply to avoid too many donations after a person gained what was needed? Then all of the sociological reasons people feel a need to monitor and distrust many valid and many not and on and on…its an entire field. I wish you well.

      • Elisa,
        I have already told you I noted your advice and I am aware of how I need to handle things. I appreciate your concern. Thank you 🙂
        I never asked for help and in fact I often ask people to give elsewhere, but people WANT to help. Most people just want to send the kids small tokens, something that doesn’t need to be claimed since it isn’t money.

      • Yes!! 🙂
        Thanks for remembering me! 🙂
        I really tend to dislike ignorance shared as truth and fraud claims made by those who think they know, who do not know. I dislike the redirect of positive focus to nasty untrue welfare stereotypes. If the person is really valid, and I am thinking they are a troll, perhaps the person is simply uneducated and lacking knowledge that people have directed and advised you. The guy answering about reporting income would not be entirely correct in all income reporting situations either. My intention was to educate, re-educate, and to provide support to you.

      • Oh I totally understand where you are coming from Elisa 🙂 I know you are merely being helpful and not mean or trollish 🙂
        I do read all my comments and I do remember them ❤

    • A true PI or fraud investigator would be aware that legal services and lawyers willing to offer pro bono work/services are available to those that qualify and to those who wish to provide them.

  24. I love the hope, happiness, and magic this gave your children. Kids, even more than us, see the fairy tales in this kind of action…and it is nice, that for a little while, they can believe in that.

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  26. Reblogged this on lmatkins2's Blog and commented:
    Wishing the person who helped this family nothing but a huge blessing in return. For the family who received that huge blessing, your time will come again to regain what you lost. God puts everyone through a test, but he will never leave you there. Paying it FORWARD! God is good!♥

  27. Andrea, I just wanted to let you know that you have paid it forward already by sharing your story.

    I am a training manager at a large national company. I was so inspired by your story that we are using it to provoke conversations and thought around how important it is to show compassion. Your story will literally be shared with thousands within my organization alone. The actions in telling the storry will then be multiplied! Thank YOU for starting a movement!

  28. the same thing happened to me. I was just getting a few things at Kroger back in December. I knew I only had about $ 12.00 on my EBT card. The grand kids needed a couple things for breakfast in the morning and I tried to use my EBT but it kept coming up , that the system was down. The cashier kept trying to swipe the card over and over but it would not go through. I was sitting there in an Amigo scooter (cuz I am disabled) and told the cashier, then I am sorry I will have to put it back, i dont have any other money. Then I felt a hand on my shoulder, and saw another hand reached out to the cashier with a credit card, and a voice saying, “no need to do that, I will take care of it”…I was stunned and tried to turn around to look at the person, (but its hard in the sitting position i was in) and to also tell them “no please ,I cant let you do that,” but the voice said,” no, I insist “. I started to cry right there because I was so touched or embarrassed or what, I dont , but I just couldnt believe what just happened. The cashier and bagger were trying to comfort me, saying , please dont cry, or we will start crying. Before I knew it, my transaction was completed the lady crouched down to my shoulder and whispered “Merry Christmas” to me in my ear, and of coarse more tears came from my eyes..
    I pulled forward to try and compose myself, before I headed out of the store in the scooter. I noticed the lady had also then paid for her own stuff and proceeded to walk past me and down to the door. I never saw the ladies face, I did see that she was well dressed, and I know my bill was only $12.00 but still, for someone to do that, with out even giving it a second thought, was pretty touching to me. She was like an angel there for me in my time of need. I will never forget it. I finally got out to my van, got in and sat there and cried again for a while, thinking to myself, I dont care what anybody says, there are still a lot of wonderful kind heart ed people in this corrupted world.
    I thanked God for sending that person my way and asked Him to bless her and the gift of the food. I dried my tears and tried to compose myself in order to drive home, but when finally walked in the door, I started crying all over again, when I had to tell my daughter what had just happened.
    She said God Blessed us with a small Christmas miracle..

  29. BEAUTIFUL story! As more and more folks are needing to use SNAP and Medicaid (my Pops is one), it’s wonderful when people who are really in need of it do not get judged.

  30. I just happened to read your story on the Decor to Adore blog today. My prayers & thoughts are with your family. My husband just lost his job at the end of March. The range of emotions can at moments become unbearable. I try to encourage my husband daily that God has better plans for him….but he sometimes cannot even speak because he is so distraught. He is 57 years old…we cannot financially retire and is so discouraged by the unspoken “age discrimination”. He has been in telecom sales/management for many years. He has a master’s degree in Geology, but in 1985 lost his beloved job as a Exploration Geologist due to the loss of many jobs in the oil & gas industry. We also live in the Midwest (Omaha,NE). My prayers are with your family that your husband will be gainfully employed…you are a brave & courageous mother. May I ask for prayers for my husband and for any other family that is struggling with unemployment. God Bless You!

    • Deb,
      I hate to hear this 😦 I am so sorry. Thank you for sharing and I will pray for you all. Please keep me posted. Also, go through the comments. So many people posted job opportunities. My husband just accepted a full time position and will be moving this week. We will follow once he has housing for us. I pray you are also blessed with gainful employment

  31. I first read this in The Huffington Post, and it touched me so much. I prayed for an opportunity to “pay it forward” like the lady in line did for you. My husband is in the military and I work full time at the moment so we are fortunate to be able to put some money in savings and live without too much worry at the moment but we have been very “rob Peter to pay Paul” at times. I know we are fortunate to both be employed. The job market is so bad I worry what will happen when my husband retires in two years. We have a small child with a rare metabolic disorder (and a developmental delay as a result) to care for.
    I prayed for you and your family for a week or so before I had an opportunity to help someone else. I got my chance one day when I was doing a trip to the store on my lunch break. The family ahead of me in line was on the phone about their EBT card. I could tell it wasn’t going well but didn’t hear the conversation. I asked the store clerk to add their held total balance to mine, hugged the mother on the way out, and cried in the car on the way back to work.
    I’ve never been on assistance as an adult, but growing up my parents did get food from the food bank and a lot of help from family and friends. I worry now as a result about providing for my child. I am thankful for the chance to help someone else and I pray we will continue to be able to provide for our little family.
    I will continue to pray for you and your family. Thank you for your frankness and your bravery in sharing your story.
    God Bless!
    Cyndi

    • Cyndi, I am in tears….That is so beautiful and inspiring. Thank you for sharing with us all ❤ Many blessings to you. I can attest what you did will be with this person forever.

  32. What a fabulous story. No one would call me sentimental, (I hide that well), but I *have* been on SNAP, and I too was grateful for it. As taxpayers, we have contributed for years for these programs–where is the shame in using it for a while if you need to? I’ve been working since I was 14 years old, and believe me, I’m all too familiar with privation and struggle. Your story helped to restore my faith as well; we sometimes forget that most people are basically good…we see too much negative garbage on TV and elsewhere and it’s easy to become jaded and cynical. Thank you for sharing that story…and Happy Mother’s Day to you. It’s clear to me that YOU ROCK! 🙂

  33. I hope that your husband has been blessed with a really great paying job that will last until Jesus comes back.

    • He was hired 2 weeks ago at a place in MO!! He left us Thursday to head there and start his job and find us a home. We miss him, but this is just a temporary separation and we talk to him every night. His boss seems quite pleased with his knowledge and abilities already ❤ Thank you so much for your kind words

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  37. You just made this big burly North Dakota guy cry… I have to use SNAP too, as I live on disability because of mental illness, but I’m single – I can’t imagine how difficult it must be to support a whole family with SNAP. I’m so glad that things are changing for the better for your family:)

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