Marion Really Needs Her Village

When I was a kid, I couldn’t wait to get a job, so I could have my own money and do what I wanted with it. At 15 years old, my mother enrolled me in a summer work program for teens and I worked at the Gainesville Police Department archiving paper files to microfiche. Back then, that was the technology of the day...crazy to think how far things have come. While that job only lasted a summer, it was the first in what would become a consistent work history.

For the next years of my life, I was either in school or working and sometimes both. From 1988-2015, the only gaps in my work history are filled with school. So in 2015 when lost a job that I loved I was devastated. The most difficult part is to this day no one has given me a clear or honest reason why I was not asked to return and because Georgia is an at will state, no one is required to. But you’d think after 12 years of contributions and being a team player, someone would have the courage to tell me the truth…anyhoo, I am really working to heal that hurt, which isn't and hasn’t been easy. And I miss my students dearly.

Parallel to the employment storyline, since 2008, I have been dealing with some major health issues that have COMPLETELY changed and affected the way I can live my life. I have Femoral Neuropathy-The femoral nerve is one of the largest nerves in your leg. It’s located near the groin and controls the muscles that help straighten your leg and move your hips. I developed this as the result of a benign tumor trapping part of my nerve. When the tumor was removed the nerve was unable to be repaired leaving me with permanent damage. As a result, In my right leg, I regularly experience numbness, tingling, weakness, hypersensitivity, constant pain and limited mobility from my hip to my instep. I also have Ulcerative Colitis which is a chronic, inflammatory bowel disease that causes inflammation in the digestive tract, which also causes debilitating pain.

The intersection of unemployment and disability is full of people trying to make it across safely and with their pride still in tact, but I tell you that is no easy feat.

Ø Unemployment only lasts for 17 weeks in Georgia and there are no extensions

Ø I, as most, have been denied disability on my first attempt and I am currently in the appeals phase.

Ø When I lost my job, I lost my health insurance, which I desperately need and oddly enough, I don’t seem to qualify for Medicaid or Obamacare.

Ø I didn’t realize I would have to retire so early, but I have and have withdrawn all that I am allowed.

Ø I wish I could call home and ask mom and dad to help, but the best they can do is keep my spirits lifted from above.

Ø I’m in pain ever day, I am exhausted from the pain meds, but my insomnia fights with my exhaustion and I am extremely embarrassed that the life I have worked so hard to achieve has come to a go fund me campaign. This is not what I saw for my 45 year-old-self, but here I am.

I am not a flashy person, I drive an 11-year-old Hyundai Elantra, I live in a 1300sq ft apartment and don't have a whole lot of "things".

I’m regularly applying for work, promoting my business ( and doing my best to only spend money on necessities, but as you know, even the basics can be costly. Since March 2016, I have been working temporarily and part-time as an Adjunct Professor and as it’s a blessing, but what I earn from that, doesn’t even cover my rent.

I have also been looking for a roommate for months and although there have been some good prospects, it hasn't worked out yet.

Your assistance will go directly to pay for the basics: Rent, utilities, phone, insurance, food, gas and medicine, which combined totals about $2,850.00. Fortunately, I don’t have any credit card debt, but I do have a $40,000.00 hospital and orthopedic surgeon bill from fracturing my foot August 2015, which is still healing.

I’m sure some of you are asking yourselves, why didn’t I say something sooner or why didn’t I call you. The truth is, I thought it would just work itself out and for 15 months, it has, but as I type this my checking account is almost $500 in the negative and I have no idea how I am going to pay my rent for September, so ish just got real. It takes a village, so I’m finally asking mine for help. Anything you can do to help would be so appreciated.

Thank you for taking time out of your day to read my story.

Peace and Many Blessings,

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Marion A Wright
Smyrna, GA

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