I know poverty. My mom would buy me hotdog meat or soy, boil some buckwheat and this was my food because I was a four-year-old child, and she would get some wheat germs from the animal food store, sprout them and it would be her food. Sometimes we would pick dandelions or nettles and make soup out of them. Since then, I also know that a chicken thigh is equal to 2 - 3 soups (you can boil it a couple of times to get a broth) and a main course. My mom worked at school back then. In Russia, especially in the 90s, the socio-economical crisis was severe, Lots of people lost their jobs and others would not be able to support themselves even being employed. During the day, men would commit themselves to their normal duties at work, and in the night, they would go work elsewhere (loading and unloading trucks, for instance). My father was not willing to support a family and in addition left a lot of debt on us. My mom was receiving threats from his "friends" that she would not be able to see me one day if she would not pay her husband's debts. Parents were in a process of such an anticipated divorce. All this information is not to highlight a heroic nature of all the deeds that were following our modest lifestyle, but to set the bar and maybe it will happen that the coming advice will be relatable to my readers who are currently struggling.
Despite living in financial penury, there still was a lot of dignity and self-respect that my mom was projecting, so I never felt misfortunate. More so, there was a strong confidence in a better future. Our tiny apartment was always clean, no clutter, no dirt, essential minimum of items. Our clothes were always clean and smelling beautifully. We always had a simple set of nice dishes and silverware to make our scarce meals embellished and pleasing. All these attributes allowed us to be afloat. Besides, my mom was always on top of the opportunities that could potentially be beneficial. She tried to always be dynamic and have fun. Never would she agree to accept the idea of submitting to those unpleasant circumstances. She would go to the parties to meet people that would make beneficial and fruitful connections, to find a partner. Sometimes, her boyfriends would give those celebratory, careless periods when she would be able to travel and see different places, to live life she was confident she deserved. In turn, I was spending time with various people learning to be flexible and independent, learning to be self-sufficient and entertained by simple things... Years passed by...The continuation of this personal story is fairly positive. My parents finally divorced, my mom quickly found her man. We moved to the opposite side of the country such that there was no immediate threat, and soon enough life of my new family started bringing new gifts.
The point that I would like to highlight is that even in struggle always, always remember that in the end of the day you have your Dignity. It is the thing that will never let you give up to the unlucky circumstances. There is not much money required to maintain a good hygiene of the body and cleanliness of the surrounding environment. There are always people who can help with children or with finding at least a simple job. The main thing is to know that you deserve high-quality life. One should never give up to the temporary lack of resource. Respect yourself on your budget. Do not aim to buy some unnecessary shit that symbolizes superficial wealth. Build your life right now in such a way that you are proud for not obeying to the weakness and decay, that you exhibit your wholeness and self-sufficiency with those minimal essential attributes. There is always a choice to slip into the parasitic survival that mostly resembles wrapping up with life. Choose a different path. Choose to be above and stronger than the circumstances. Be open-minded. Maintain the liveliness and greed, lust for life. The opportunities are always within the radius of access.