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Posts Tagged ‘Job’

Supporting Them

 

When I became divorced, there was never an issue of supporting my children. While I am aware that a lot of men have issue with paying, or the pay amounts, I chose the opposite. My lawyer gave me a figure that stated the amount that she was going for and because I didn’t know any better, I agreed to the sum. Later, I began reading online and found a calculator provided by the state as to general guidelines. I filled out the form and found to my astonishment that I could be paying more!

I approached my lawyer at the next meeting, provided her with the material and said that I wanted to pay the maximum amount by law. She advised me against it, but after all, they are my angels, my light, the reason for trying to achieve a better future for them and my only family on earth. Why wouldn’t I want to give them as much as I can? The order was changed to the maximum amount and I’m proud to tell anyone that I pay faithfully, and on time, each and every week.

When I was out of a job last fall into winter, I let the ex know what was happening and that I was struggling and would pay her what I could – even as I edged closer to homelessness without a weekly  paycheck. I did payed what I could – an over payment, an underpayment, but I tried to keep it going even as I was unemployed. Even as I went out on endless and unproductive interviews. Even as Thanksgiving and Christmas were creeping closer and becoming unavoidable.

Then, she notified Child Support and told them she was not getting child support. A further move by her that caused me heartbreaking grief and wrenching disgust, was that she decided to not tell them of the amounts that I had given to her by hand. As far as the ‘system’ had been aware, I had simply stopped paying anything at all.

One morning early last month, I woke up, fixed a cup of tea, and sat to check bank balances. I was stunned to find that my account was frozen – a lien had been enforced by the state division of Child Support. I could not even withdraw money to pay for gas which would allow me to travel to work 22 miles away. I don’t have sick time accumulated yet. If I don’t work, I don’t get paid. Without pay I can not meet any financial obligations – rent, phone, electricity, basic cable. Child support.

I declined to put up a post at the time about the tale of having my assets frozen. It’s humuliating having that done. It’s a desperate situation that stops your heart and has you thinking lunatic thoughts. It’s embarrassing knowing that you are unable to gain the necessary money to support your children. And mostly, it was a deepening of the chasm that seperated me and the ex because she had verbally said to me that she would be fine with repaying the back amount on a weekly basis as I could afford it while I was searching for employment.

Plans for children do not stop. There are sports to be paid for, gas for two and three times a week pickups and drop offs, groceries to be bought and entertainment for them. All while unemployed.

Then she notified child support.

I was devestated.

Thankfully, I now have a job. I have a paycheck that again has my child support taken out automatically, I have weekly taxes to pay and I have a new health plan that decimates my weekly check. All this on less money – much less money, than I was earning at my last position.

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When I Win

I mentioned before that I’ve teamed up with a woman who has been unbelievably lucky at the lottery. She’s won mid-level prizes in the past year which include a scratch for $10,000. It’s uncanny how often, and how much, she wins.

So I offered to go in with her. I’d pay the same amount as she would and we would split the prizes. I started off by giving her $20. I figured that we would play a few times a week and go from there. In total, I believe that since we started doing this at the end of January I’ve given her an out-of-pocket total of $60 – far more than I should be giving out.

As I think while sitting here, I am unable to come up with the total amount that we have won. But I can tell you that the two largest tickets that we’ve hit on are a $1,000 ticket and two $500 tickets! In between we’ve been playing constantly – daily … with money that we’ve won! Each and every day we win between $20 – $100 dollars. Each day! And we continue to play every day – with money that we keep winning!

When the amount of the daily winnings get to about $75 or so, we play smart. Half of the winnings gets split between the two of us, and we play the other half. So, for instance, two days ago we won $110, we split $60 between us, $30 apiece, and played the remaining $50. Every day I’m getting cash amounts ranging from $20 to $75 or so handed to me. Cash. Cash that I put away in a safe. A dollar amount that is large enough for me to pay cash for two items that I’ve long lusted after. A large screen TV to replace the old one that was given to me (which sports in the upper left hand corner a permanent splash of green from the aging picture tube), and a new computer to replace the one I use now that is slow, painfully slow.

She keeps saying that we are about to win a large amount. A really large amount. I’m excited within reason of course, but I occasionally let my mind wander.

People often ask each other what they would do if they ever won ‘the big one’. I already know what I’d do.

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Managing Time

There’s such a lot going on each day in this past week, it has been difficult getting on and posting. Although I seem to have the time to read other posts almost daily!

Christmas turned out well. Christmas Eve the little angels fell asleep by 10:45 PM and by 11:15, Santa had written a reply note, filled the stockings and laid out the presents. True to form, my daughter was awake at 4:11 AM. The three of them woke me up at 6:00 AM sharp and it was such a delight to see all three of them in the bedroom doorway – even my oldest, with huge smiles chomping at the bit to get to the gifts.

It was a wonderful morning of tearing open paper, hugs and kisses and topped off with my cooking a full, heavy Christmas Morning breakfast. The ex came and took them at 11:00 AM and it was very sad for me. But, it was not like it was last year for me at all. This year, I had made a plan to work a shift later in the day. So, I kept busy, was around someone else who had to leave their family also and had a great talk with her. I found great comfort being there with her.

My new shift position has me coming home very late – close to midnight. But, once more, I’m grateful to have anything at all! In the beginning (heck, only last week) I was sitting in front of the tube and flipping while smoking butt after butt and then lying back and falling asleep on the couch. I’ll write a post about my nasty habit later.

My new approach when I get home is to sit for just a few moments while my PC boots up. When it’s up, I immediately sign on to Netflix and find where I left off the night before (in the middle of a movie or a documentary) and lie down in bed and watch what I can before I fall asleep. I then try to have my internal clock wake me up around 7:00 AM and get up. I want to have a rhythm going and not wake/sleep haphazardly.

I’ve taken to go online and read up on my class before it has even begun. I’ve found online tests that I can take for each chapter and can pinpoint some nuance that I don’t quite grasp and study harder. I am determined to be well prepared and ace the class. As far as financial aid, I find that I have to wait until next week to try to straighten out any money issues because naturally, they’re closed for the holidays. But I’ll get up there Monday and have a face to face to see what might be done. Worst case scenario is that I don’t get anything for now. However, I’ll bring my checkbook, arrange for a payment plan, make the first payment and keep applying like crazy – there has to be something that I qualify for and I’m confident that I’ll get something.

There’s something huge that’s been bothering me – reacquainted girlfriend. Something in my mind that’s been, again, telling me that she’s not the person I want to be with. Much as I try to stay fully committed, I have this dreadful feeling that I simply do not want to be with her. Or, maybe it’s that I’m not excited by her company? She’s certainly been a undenyable and indispensible for who constantly dispenses confidence and who cheers for me as I’ve mentioned many times before. As I stir up my reasoning I try to not dismiss it and stay my determined course with her, but try to pinpoint exactly what it is that wants me – sometimes at arm’s length, a shadow away from her. I’m feeling that a lot of it has to do with her constant, unalterable need to be close and closer to me physically. She perpetually needs long kisses, hard hugs and physical intimacy. Nothing at all wrong with that! But, it’s constant. And I just don’t want that every single moment of the time we’re together.

More, after the Break

… Planting Seeds

I’ve been experiencing the results of specific plans being laid out within the past few months. And though they’ve been laughably knee jerk, or altogether not specifically sparked by intelligent forethought, or driven by step by step strategy, they’ve somehow borne fruit. And it’s taught me a valuable lesson.

I had applied for a position at a building where I sometimes fill in as a pool per diem. I’ve been going there for years and where I have unknowingly built up quite a peer admiration society I’ve found out. When I went there a few weeks ago to fill in, I asked those around me, those who admired my work ethic and knowledge, if there were any positions open and they quickly said that there were. Well, unknown to them, when I went back the next working day to ask the supervisor, she loved me and my resume, but had just hired two new staff members. Damn!

A few days ago I went back for a scheduled per diem shift and it was during my shift that an employee went to the supervisor and spoke of needing time off. The supervisor called me into her office, told me of the circumstances (and that she had to let that employee go due to too much time being taken off) and offered me the position! It was a whirlwind because …

I had been tendered an offer at the facility where reacquainted girlfriend works! All I was waiting for was a call from them as to when they could fit me into their orientation. It was a done deal. At the same time …

I have been at the tail end of another orientation as a per diem employee only. Orientation out of the classroom and now onto the floor was deflating to put it kindly. Never had I been in a building where so much negativity about the building and the staff flowed so freely. It was disheartening, but a building where I could get a check every once in a while. It almost physically hurt to be there.

However, all bets were off when I received an offer at the building I wanted to be in. It was a rush of good feelings – stability, working at a facility that was clean, efficient, professional, fosters team-work as more than a word game, and most importantly, it’s where I want to be!

Yesterday I called the supervisor where reacquainted girlfriend works and politely and professionally thanked them for their interest but I had received another offer that I was accepting. I then called the facility where I was on floor orientation and did the same. I later learned from reacquatinted girlfriend that her supervisor was very disappointed because she really wanted someone of my caliber to come aboard as inspiration. She said that “we lost a big one“. I then called the floor orientation building (confused? maybe I should have used building #1 and building #2) and relayed the same information to them. They were a bit more peeved. I sense that they knew my worth, but on the other hand, I was only per diem (which may only come about every month or so) and was low-balled on pay. They acted on the phone as if I were abandoning their burning ship and came off kind of righteous. But, I remained committed to staying professional and courteous and thanked them for the opportunity and that they had taught me a few things  didn’t know, so I appreciated the time with them.

Let me also add that I was contacted yesterday by yet another facility, who in the voice mail said that they ‘were very excited about my resume and were very interested in setting up an interview‘!

More, after the Break

Where To Now?

Post no-offer. It was almost audibly crushing my not getting the offer yesterday. I was nearly perfect in many ways for the job, yet the one thing that stopped them was that I left my last job before securing myself a new position. She said that it was strange to do that in this economy and they worried that I was a short-term employee, a job-hopper.

If the incident did not happen at my last job, I would still be there and on my way to three years of service! So, effectively, the incident at my last job not only caused me my job at the time, it also cost me my future job.

Heartbreaking for me.

Last night I met my old boss to pick up my belongings from my old position. They were already piled into cardboard boxes. It was such a bright, neon reminder of how I had ended many, many times before – a cardboard box or a plastic bag filled with my belongings when being shuffled from foster home to foster home, moving from one dirty apartment rooming house to another in my early twenties and seeing the five white baggies and a cardboard box with random items in the backseat of my car when I had to move out as my divorce was happening. And now, the image of cardboard boxes while facing the dread of my bleeding cash reserve highlighting the incoming doom of leaving my apartment.

Today, I am in an orientation for a per diem position. Funny, I never thought that I would have made it this far without a full-time position being secured. But now, here I am, sitting for a day, not able to go look for a position, preparing for a once in a while shift. And, the same tomorrow.

My anxiety is ever-increasing as the holidays approach. Am I going to be able to get a position before Christmas? Will everyone be holding off until Christmas and the New Year have passed? I wouldn’t be able to hold on that long.

What about you? Any ideas, strategies or comments? Any thoughts or December assurances?

The Pot Is Simmering

What a few days it’s been!

While out on the road Friday early afternoon, I received a call on my cell. I didn’t recognize the number but seeming as I’m out looking for a job, I can ill afford to ignore a call.

I answered and a woman asked for me, we exchanged pleasantries and she told me that as she was looking through applications, mine stuck out because of my particular niche in the industry. My heart bounded higher than the nine lords a-leaping! She asked if she could set up an interview at some point and I told her that I could do it right now! She was a bit surprised but agreed. So off I drove to the facility while clutching my rosary and praying feverishly.

It’s a larger facility than the one that I have just left, but immaculate, warm and filled with activity. Much to my surprise we talked for over an hour! It went both ways – her asking me pertinent questions, and me asking what I felt was needed to ask about the building. After the interview, and after I drove away, I had to spontaneously yell in jubilation out of pure excitement over how well it went!

Shortly after I came back home, I received another call from her. She asked if I had a formal resume and could I come back Monday for a second interview and meet with someone else as well? Of course to both!

Needless to say, the weekend was brimming over with excitement, which I could barely contain, and I constantly went over in my head as to how else I could rightly bolster my qualifications and best prepare for Monday’s huge event. I wanted to anticipate, as best as I could, what questions might be asked and have ready answers.

Friday night I picked up my children (oldest was reluctant because of wanting to hang out with his friends) and alternated my time between keeping them well-loved and busy, and anxiously going over in my head how I needed to prepare.

Reaquainted girlfriend, again, came to my aid. We brought ourselves, and our combined children, together at her home on Sunday so I could work a bit more on my resume and print it out for Monday.  By the way, I made an awesome tasting blueberry pie!

Sunday night, after my little ones (little ones?) were picked up, she came over to my place and we talked over possible interview questions, situations and possible answers. It really helped me a lot to formulate potential questions, mull over possible answers and to talk them over out loud. What a session.

I went to bed earlier than usual to insure that I would be at my best. I woke up this morning, drank my usual cups of tea, ironed a clean shirt, showered, cleaned-up and drove away to the second interview.

More, after the Break

High Hopes

Out of nowhere, out of the blue, the call came ringing about 1:00 PM.

Reacquainted girlfriend called and told me that someone at her facility was being let go, and that she had already spoken to her boss about me, and her boss agreed to letting me come down to fill out the application. I quickly showered, dressed and (finally) found the facility. I filled out the application and was lucky enough that the boss came to meet me.

We had to have talked for at least a half an hour! About the facility, about what it might be lacking and how I might fit in based on my qualifications. A lovely lady, but make no bones about it, she wants things to work smoothly for her facility. She even went the step of taking copies of certain documents of mine that she needs and telling me that I could have it!

It’s not perfect. The hours are opposite of what I’m used to, it isn’t 40 hours, although they consider 30 hours full-time for benefits, and the pay isn’t great. It also hinges on them formally letting go of the other person. But, it’s a job, it provides a paycheck and now I have a rope thrown to me that I can hang on to and stop from drifting further away!

It will certainly impact my children. My schedule of how often I see them will be thrown into total disorientation, but I must go with what I have right now at this moment. And, while I’m there, I can still keep looking for a better opportunity. Not that I want to leave them hanging when I do find something else – anything but, but I must still think of more hours to support myself and my children.

This also gives me something to cling to in terms of staying in school. My plan was to go back for January classes. Without a paycheck, without starting in January, I might not get that chance for another year due to popular enrollment. So, I have the chance.

Reaquainted girlfriend. She continues to aid me in whatever way she can. I’m trying to come up with a better term for what she does for me and how I feel, but all that keeps coming up is that I’m totally humbled by her belief in me.

In the past two weeks since I called out to her for help, I have spent much time thinking about her and she has done nothing but bolster me with support.

I’ve also been praying like I hadn’t in years. Doing the rosary even! I’m becoming comfortable with my prayers and even though distracting thoughts try to constantly interfere while I’m praying, I find that I’m able to … not so much shut them out, but I’m getting the hang of dispeling them as a simple annoyance.

I’m still going out again, but having hope is an amazing feeling that I haven’t had the luxury of in a very long while!

Keep those good thoughts and prayers coming – please.

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