You Wanna Know Who's Supporting The Troops?

I met Kim Yaman during Yearly Kos in Chicago a couple of weeks ago. When she has a chance she comments at Daily Kos, but that's about the extent of her blogging. She's kind of busy. She works two jobs here in North Carolina in order to support her granddaughter, Layla, who was left in her care when Layla's mother and father were both deployed six weeks after she was born. Layla is now 4 1/2 years old. Kim now also supports her daughter, who returned from the Navy 16 months ago with a disabling brain injury. The V.A. has yet to issue a single disability check.

Comments

Holy. Mother. This one made me cry. I

Who is supporting the troops? I am.

Screwy - thanks for sharing this woman's story with us. Unbelievable. And she's got a helpful congressman. Can you imagine what it's like for the ones who live in McHenry's district? If she's got time, I'd love for her to visit BlueNC.

Here is a little bit of info that might be helpful to her and to families like hers. Child Care for Families of Severely Injured Service Members. As with anything connected with the military - there are a some forms to fill out, but they're user-friendly and can be filled out by a family member or physician if the service member is unable to do it themselves. If someone out there reads this and thinks it might apply to them, private message me, and I'll fill you in more. This program has already helped a lot of wounded soldiers and marines in NC, but I don't think it's advertised much.

PS. If the child is already in care, it doesn't matter - this program will still pay.

PPS. Through a partnership with NACCRRA (National Association of Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies), DoD may pay for child care for active duty or deployed national guard troops child care. It doesn't bring the troops home, but it's a help while the bravest among us are serving.


Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi

We're the lucky ones

Thanks to Screwy for all the work he did putting my story together. I love my granddaughter Leyla; she's bright and goofy and musical and she's got so much SPARKLE to her! But, of course, all of us parents of US service members wish we could be grandparents instead of ersatz moms and dads to the many scores of thousands of children whose parents are gone for months and years ... and those whose parents may never come home again.

Yes, I work seven days a week at two full-time jobs. The wages from one job go to my household expenses, my younger daughter's university tuition costs, and Leyla's care (her dad pays generous child support); wages from the other job support Leyla's mom. Except for the week I took off to attend YearlyKos in August, I hadn't had one single day off work since early May. Before that, I hadn't had a single day off since March.

Leyla and I are so incredibly lucky. We have each other and an amazing network of "intentional family" who are in this with me. We laugh and sing and dance and color and draw and read. We make goofy CDs from the music we've collected together. We practice making aaaaaaaaaaaaaangry faces in the mirror, and have smile competitions after we brush our teeth. We're just so incredibly lucky. I can't imagine what life's like for the thousands of other kids and families who don't have the same opportunities and resources. And ... oh, God ... I cannot ever imagine what life is like for the millions of little girls and boys in Iraq and Afghanistan whose lives have been decimated by these insane wars.

It's up to us to provide what the Bush administration doesn't provide, and it's up to us to keep the pressure on to create sane and sound policies that will end these wars and care for the people whose lives have been filled with far too much pain for far too long.

We can do it, though. We have to.

thank you for all you're doing!

We're all supporting you - if only with our hearts. If there's ever anything else we can do, please let us know.


Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi

I've never meant this more....

God Bless You.

One of the pitfalls of childhood is that one doesn't have to understand something to feel it. - Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Jesus Swept ticked me off. Too short. I loved the characters and then POOF it was over.
-me

Y'all have to go read her Kos post

It's magical. Somehow Leyla makes lemonade out of lemons. she doesn't even know she's been given bitter fruit. What an amazing story. Thank you Kim for stopping by to tell us more.

I wish I could give you a big hug (and a lot of money but I know even money won't fix what's really wrong . . . )
 
News of the 10th district: See Pat Go Bye Bye,

Thanks for those words of grace & understanding

The reason I was laughing in the video when Screwy asked about getting help from my Congress members is exactly the reason you say -- "money won't fix what's really wrong." Fixing MsSpentyouth's family situation is laughable in the midst of the utterly abusive chaos that's being forced upon millions of people -- and my family are among people least damaged by it all. That's the irony.

I dare any one of the "support the war because we have to support the troops" folks to adopt a family with a relative at Walter Reed for one measly month. Take out a second mortgage. Take on a second job and contribute everything from that second job to that family. Sell their grandmother's antique sideboard on eBay and help the family get handrails for their bathtub and toilets. Then they can slap the yellow ribbon on their car with real pride.

The whole situation is surreal, and it's up to us to make things right.

There are several gems in what you say

Which is why people have to ask the questions of politicians, not journalists.

This is my favorite from BlueNC:

I dare any one of the "support the war because we have to support the troops" folks to adopt a family with a relative at Walter Reed for one measly month. Take out a second mortgage. Take on a second job and contribute everything from that second job to that family. Sell their grandmother's antique sideboard on eBay and help the family get handrails for their bathtub and toilets. Then they can slap the yellow ribbon on their car with real pride.

and this from the your kos diary:

Oh, I support the troops. Donald Rumsfeld quit. George Tenet quit. Karl Rove quit. Andrew Card and Ari Fleischer quit. Colin Powell and Richard Armitage quit. John Ashcroft quit. Leyla and I won't be quitting. She's stuck in the job those men put her in: being the child of parents who weren't there on her first birthday or her second or her third, being the grandchild of a middle-aged woman who works every goddamned day to keep her promises. We won't quit.

Journalists aren't saying these things or asking questions based on these truths because (aside from cowardice) these truths are simply outside their experiences (because they don't want to know.)
 
News of the 10th district: See Pat Go Bye Bye,

Way to go

This is just one of those perfect examples (there are thousands more) where the heart of resistance flies against the face of the reality of occupation in the real world.
Well done. Fight on.