Archive

Posts Tagged ‘unemployed’

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.

Read more…

Advertisements

Temp Help

Well, that about says it all.

After the devastation of not being tendered an offer after my second interview last week, I was in an orientation class for three days. It’s an orientation that will only lead to a per diem job and who knows just how many shifts I’ll pick up? It’s not full-time or even part-time, so no benefits and I’m still in the same position.

This morning I received a call to fill in a call out. Temp help. I must take it. I must take anything I can at all.

And so, Christmas looms large. No tree, no presents, no cheer. But my children – they’re so young! How can I decide between presents for them and rent?

God help me.

I dreamed of my ex last night.

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?

Smile For The Receptionist

The hardest part of looking for a job in my field is a cold walk-in.

I shower, dress up in business casual attire (nobody will know that I wore this yesterday) drive to a few select locations and walk in the front door. The receptionist greets me and I quickly tell who I am and what I’m looking for. More often than not she reaches behind herself and retrieves a clipboard with a standard application already neatly clipped to the board and a pen attached via a silver ball chain. I sit in a comfy chair filling out, yet again, where I went to high school and other pertinent information.

I rise, walk back to her and ask if I might meet with someone. I’m much better person to person and was once described by an old boss of ‘giving great interview’. Which is precisely why I left my old career involving cubicles and retrained myself in my mid 40’s – I enjoy personal contact.

 Most times there is no one to meet with. HR is out or the heads of the building are in meetings. I don’t take it personally, but I do kind of deflate as I walk out with a smile on my face after I offer a  sincere ‘enjoy your day’.

I’m not exaggerating when I say that I need something soon! Very soon. I’ve thought of posting my bank balance on here, as long as I’m anonymous and all, to show my rapidly eroding finances (as I’ve seen others do) but I’ll think about it a little longer.

Because I had such a late schedule of filling out applications yesterday, I had to call the ex and cancel picking up my children. It broke me dreadfully, but I had no choice but to keep going late into the afternoon. By the time I would have finished, picked them up and brought them back, it would have been time to leave. The guilt was a consuming fire in my mind. But, honestly, and regretfully, I would have had to spend money on filling my tank and buy more food for them. That money will now go toward gas and food this coming weekend when I have them again.

The woman who I’ve recently reestablished a relationship with called me and asked if I wanted to come over and have dinner. I agreed because I didn’t want to repeat what I had done to her before. Not that I really wanted company, but again, I’m realizing (through her observations) that I do have a tendency to self-isolate, so I agreed. I’m glad I did.

Something that I note about myself is that when I’m alone, I tend to not eat. At all. For a day at a time. I’ll sip tea while quietly looking out through the window or I’ll flip through the channels looking at nothing at all and I’ll smoke way too much (picked it up again as I lost my job). But, I’ll not eat. Anything. Funny that I don’t even get hunger rumbles in my belly.

She made chicken, rice and sautéed vegetables and it was delicious! Ice tea washed it all down perfectly. She commented on how thin I was and I became a little self-conscious. We hung out for a few hours and then I left about 9:30PM.  It was a welcome distraction from my normal routine.

I can’t keep regular sleeping hours either. I wake up multiple times each night and after a while I drift back again. In and out, in and out. Sometimes fall asleep around 7:00 PM, sometimes at 5:00 PM, sometimes after midnight. Sometimes wake up for good at 4:30 AM, sometimes at 6:00 AM, sometimes at 9:00 AM. Each night (or day) it’s different.

This morning I’ll shower, dress up in business casual attire (nobody will know that I wore this yesterday) drive to a few select locations and walk in the front door.

I’ll smile for the receptionist. I hope there’s someone to meet with.

 P.S. I’ve noticed that a lot of other blogs are able to respond to a comment within a blocked box. For instance, when I post a comment, that person will respond in the comments section and it will appear as a thinner width-sixed box under my original comment. When I respond to a comment on this blog, I get it showing as a line by line by line comment section. Can anyone point out how you do that – get a threaded, thinner width-sized box under the original comment? I’ve looked through the options, but don’t see anything that addresses this. It would make a threaded comment much neater. Thanks for any help.

Oh, I get it. I have to click the ‘Reply’ shown within the initial comment itself! That is, instead of going to the bottom of the post and entering in a brand new comment. Oh, OK.

A Quiet Breath Above The Foam

The way I figure – what else can go wrong?

Nothing.

Thus, my timid resolve, after reading a lot of positive blogs, to move ahead. Inspiration? Surely the many single mom’s who get it done. A good fact? That my speciality is still hiring – have to get out and look, but something will come up. A healthy word or two? Someone that I’ve re-contacted and who, for some glorious reason, came back without hesitation.

It’s out to a rumored opening to fill out an application, then to the former employer to tender my resignation (so I can get my very small severance pay that I badly need), over to unemployment to fill out the paperwork and then to try to gather a little money to buy food for the Thanksgiving feast that I will have with my three angels tomorrow.

More good news will come. It must and I demand it!

I have faith that God is with me.

—————————————

Well, I did apply for that position but no one was able to meet with me. It’s an application among applications.

I tendered my resignation at my now former employer – everything is very amicable actually and they gave me several leads.

I walked over to the unemployment office and everything is in the computer.

I prayed a quiet rosary while driving around.

I have to begin thinking about my list of food for Thanksgiving and prepare for my angels to be dropped off. I can do this, can’t I?

Officially, the new book is now being written.

My Forced March into Madness

I had such a bout of panic and anxiety yesterday, that at times I seemed to have been surgically spliced and lightly lifted out of my own body. I was terrified.

I couldn’t find my professional license. I need to prove that I am able to work in my field, and that proof is my professional license. I looked in my small safe that I keep in the closet that holds other important papers that I need to keep, and it is also the most logical location for where the license would be kept. I was wide-eyed and stilted after I opened the safe only to find that it was missing!

I rifled through my tall bureau where there’s a shelf that I use to keep other important documents such as the divorce agreement, my bank checks and assorted papers. It wasn’t there! I then quickly tore at my nightstand where I keep various saved papers from the kids’ schoolwork that they’ve given me from time to time, allowing me occasional cool comfort and the slightest of illusion that I am an involved parent within their presence in school. Nothing there! I looked in my kitchen ‘junk’ drawer, I ripped through the drawer in the small table that used to be my nightstand when I was married, but is now the catch-all at my apartment door. Nothing in either!

I felt the panic as a dizzy menace spreading as quickly as though it were colored dye spreading through my mind – filling my head, narrowing my thoughts, trembling my fingers, my heart overextending to accept blood and forcefully plunging closed – the center of my life was clawing through piles of scattered documents, circulars, magazines and miscellaneous opened and unopened mail that now lied in a wide circle around me as I knelt, centered amid the paper debris. I rapidly and savagely reopened envelope after envelope where it might have been, separating contents from their proper container without rejoining them for later use and throwing them aside, tossing them even further away from me and creating an even larger circle of print matter that in the end had me perfectly centered, fully surrounded and piled on all sides, mocking me for my inept ability in keeping something so important within easy grasp.

I placed my forehead down on the floor as if I might do for eastern meditation as I began to cry silently in raging frustration and blinding panic, As I raised my head to breath, I happened to glance under my bed. There, I could see boxes of storage items – photo albums of relatives I never knew, a box of glasses that I won at a work raffle last Christmas, a old colorful basket, and a plastic shopping bag filled with papers. I reached shoulder-length under the bed and pulled quickly as if I were saving the bag from harm under the bed. More of the same filtered out – old bills, old magazines, circulars from last year and articles that I never read. But, somewhere near the middle of the plastic bag was an envelope with my handwriting on it. I opened it, and there, nestled between my social security card and three small wallet sized pictures, was my professional license.

My overpowering relief was met, at that very same exact instance, with a rapidly ballooning despair. The three pictures were the pictures taken of my children at the hospital the day they were born – their newborn pictures! I found myself holding in my left hand my most precious, most treasured above all lost past, and in my right, my needy, bleak and uncertain future.

My thoughts couldn’t distill my elation for finding my professional license from the jarring jolt of electricity that thundered through me at seeing my babies as newborns, and I continued kneeling, sitting on my heels in the ring of torn, mismatched, scattered papers, sweating through my shirt, hands twitching, barely sane and exquisitely solitary.

Much later, last night at about 8:00 PM, I received a call from a realtor – my house is being put up for ‘short sale’.

This morning I found out via email, that I am not eligable for financial assistance if I want to go to school this coming year.

I am out of work, my home where my children live is to be taken, I am not able to receive assistance to better myself in school and, again, I am alone.

Is there anybody out there?

Reaching Up to Zero

The worst happened – I lost my job.

Though my bosses both told me that they knew that the multiple charges against me were trumped up, to fight back against them – all of them, would be futile. There are just too many of them to isolate one at a time and defend. There are just too many, and the long, drawn out attempt to take on line item upon line item would only weaken my integrity, ability to lead others and bring into question my character. I’m given the choice of either trying to fight or willfully resign.

We hugged, she shed a quiet tear and told me that she knew that it was bullshit, but there it was. We left on good terms. But, the reality of it comes down to money.

If I resign – signing a letter saying so, I get my built up vacation pay. Without it, I will have had no income for two weeks. However, I received bad news about resigning: resigning will not allow me to collect unemployment. Unemployment will give me a sort of safety net if I can’t find a job right away, which, obviously, I desperatly need.

I must get out immediately and find another job. Now. Though the pain and desperation cling to me as a wet and cold sheet – I don’t know … but, I need to get out there today. Thanksgiving week.

I had my children this past weekend and told them. They, as children, took it well and didn’t have any questions after I told them. What I didn’t tell them is that Daddy will only have enough money to cover December’s rent and possibly even January’s rent. This doesn’t take into account phone, cable, electricity, gas … and food.

This is Thanksgiving and I have them this year for Thanksgiving. I need to spend money for turkey and all the fixings. Each time that I’ve spent even two dollars, I receive a sinking feeling that I’m two dollars closer to living on the streets.

And, I know I couldn’t survive that.

I did go to church yesterday and my youngest son wanted to go with me! He watched me well up as I sat there in the pew and recited my rosary. I felt weak, vulnerable and pathetic knowing he saw me. But, seeing all the couples with their young children brough back such torturous memories of us going to church when we were together that I couldn’t hold back the remorse or the begging to God to turn back the clock.

These are not the boisterous thoughts that I thought I would have at my age.

Is there anybody out there?

%d bloggers like this: