Justin and his dad in the crowd
Advocacy, Music, Writing

“Never let ‘em break you down”

Actually, independent living in and of itself, is cool. It’s the systems that I need for support that I’m finding incredibly frustrating. Going to keep up the good fight to live a self-directed life!

“No matter how far I go, I always end up back here”

Remember when I said I was getting a housing voucher and I was totally amazed and how that would help me able to stay in my apartment for a long time because of that math problem of living on SSI of $841 a month doesn’t actually cover $1335/month in rent? Nothing’s ever as easy as it seems like it should be, right?

Well, first a voucher for a 1-bedroom was approved. A 1-bedroom doesn’t work for me with 24-hour caregiver staff and the amount of equipment and space I need to navigate around an apartment. If I had 1 live-in caregiver, and not multiple caregivers providing 24-hour care, then they would have approved a voucher for a 2-bedroom apartment. So, 2 doctors’ letters later, and a 2-bedroom apartment as a reasonable accommodation was approved on a Friday about 2 months ago.

But wait! By the following Monday, it was denied again because my income-restricted Section 42 apartment ends up being $58 too expensive. The landlord is unable to lower the rent.  So now I am working with my doctor on another reasonable accommodation letter to start this process again and allow me to remain in this apartment that I know works for me even though it’s $58 too expensive each month.

I understand that there are rules and formulas. I also know that lives for people with disabilities don’t always go according to plans, rules, and formulas. Anyway, wish me luck with what’s now turning into 6 months of a frustratingly frustrating process.

“Take back the power”

I have had a couple of independent living successes. I applied for SNAP food benefits and Minnesota Support Grant and found out I got both! Yay! Programs like SNAP food benefits and cash assistance help me live independently.

Oh and I started rewriting my book. AAAHHH!!! Frustratingly fun is way better than frustratingly frustrating!

Watch for my live music post later this week. Preview: Much better experience at the Armory for the HAIM concert last week than I had for the Maggie Rogers concert there about 3 years ago (Maggie Rogers at the Armory: Accessibility Check). I was able to sit much closer to the stage this time! Yay! Tonight is The Bad Man record release show and Wednesday – so beyond excited for The Interrupters and Flogging Molly!

Start dancing now! Title and subtitles in this post are quoted from some of my favorite Interrupters songs:

Title Holder (YouTube) by the Interrupters

In the Mirror (YouTube) by the Interrupters

Take Back the Power (YouTube) by the Interrupters

Justin, mom, dad with the Interrupters band
Me with the Interrupters at the Varsity in 2019

5 thoughts on ““Never let ‘em break you down””

  1. Hey, Justin. You are the cool, hip and happenin’ kid!
    Keep the faith about your apartment’s bureaucracy whilst rocking out to really good live bands!

    Liked by 1 person

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