I’m a substitute teacher and honestly, the pandemic wrecked me financially. If I don’t work, I don’t get paid. Like most subs, I’m employed by an agency and while work is steady in normal conditions, I may work in four different school districts during a school year. I don’t qualify as a full time employee because of my on-call status and because working five school days every week simply doesn’t add up to forty hours. We fell behind in our payments and our mortgage company granted us a forbearance. I was really thankful. Unfortunately, when that expired we were expected to come up with the payments that were “paused” in a very short time period. We have cashed out a life insurance policy and have sold possessions to try to get caught up but it’s just not enough. Between the rise in grocery costs and previous cut in wages, it seems like we just can’t get ahead. In a perfect world, I could gather enough to pay a year’s worth of house payments and be able to just work and not have panic attacks regularly. $12,000 would do wonders for my sanity.