Archive for category life
Well… I feel rather dumb for complaining about things right now, but then again I kind of have to purge it. I have my health, which somehow managed to avoid the death flu and several stomach bugs, I have a great kid who will be going to an advanced art program this summer. My depression has not, so far, kicked into gear. However, I feel like I’m just strong enough to keep that below a crust… for now.
I even have a landlord who tried to give me his rent back when I told him I’d lost my job and said he’d support me getting moved if that is what I felt I needed to do.
End of March, not long after my fifth anniversary, I came into work expecting to have the same soul-sucking experience that is has been over 90% of the time I’ve been there. I’d been training a new manager on how to do everything I did (plotting for a smooth exit), most of which fell back to me as they were getting overwhelmed. They helped field some of the calls and emails coming in, but now we had two of us drowning rather than just me.
But I’ve been there the longest. And I work for a company that epitomizes every single article I’ve ever read about toxic environments. I get no information, no communication, but then am reprimanded when my responses to those outside are “too vague” and not “resolution-driven.” It’s really no wonder that the company itself has had to change names over the course of “twenty years” it likes to brag its been in business. By law, you have to shut down when you report a loss too many years in a row.
The VP… again, not my superior… but is the right-hand to one of the owners….calls me into a conference room around lunch. Everyone is gone and the only other person there is the HR manager.
The writing is on the wall.
“Huh, am I being let go?”
I’m being told yes, and they ask if they need to go over why. I say “I don’t see the point,” and go through the list of where to find anything they might need, forward my phone to the new manager, pack my things in a very small bag (all while being offered a large box several times and professing I don’t need it). I tell them its not like I’m going to disappear so if they can’t find something, just contact me.
It was so surreal.
I’ve never been fired.
I hate this place, but I busted my ass for over five years, and now… fired?
I get in my car and take one last look at the building I feel like I have wasted a chunk of my life on and realize… I NEVER have to come back here…
I realize I’m smiling about this idea.
I realize that I’m so stubborn and have been such a closet optimist that this shithole might actually get better that this might have been just what I needed to leave and make the changes I’ve wanted to make.
I don’t even unfriend the VP on facebook, though she does get moved to the restricted group.
I talk it over with Spawn and let them know what happened and we talk about moving… like… now.
Thirteen years of life to clean out, toss, donate, sell… and so so much. Every time I think we might have gotten through one room, I find yet another box, stash of papers etc.
I would even be grateful if that was the most stressful part.
Yes, they are paying me an additional month and told me to file for unemployment (which I’ve yet to see, so apparently I did something wrong). I socked away my tax refund rather than pay anything off or blow it and I have a 401k and a money market investment account I can pull from if I feel like buying a house… a modest house, but a house nonetheless.
But I don’t feel ok.
I feel on the edge of freaking out.
Every time I’ve ever moved, I’ve usually had a friend or family to stay with until I got settled. And this time, I do have a cousin in the area, but neither of us are the type to share space unless we have to… holidays and that sort of thing. Three days is the expiration.
I’m sure the wife if dodging me when I’m up there for interviews so I don’t ask to move in with them for awhile. But the truth is, I’d live in my car and lie about it before I’d even ask.
It killed me to even tell them I was out of work. They are the pair with which I feel like I’m being graded whenever I’m around them and to ask for advice…. was an intensely hard thing for me to do. They know the area, they might have tips and places I would not think to look. And my cousin, did have contacts at a couple of the staffing agencies, both of which has sadly done nothing for me.
I’m also prideful as hell. Every time I’ve been through something stressful: divorce, poverty, a death of someone close to me, I shut out the world and maybe talk about it once I’ve resolved it.
But when you have a kid at stake, you have to put on that face of adulting as though you know what the fuck you’re doing when in truth, we’re all still those kids inside and figuring shit out only when we fuck it up. And when you have a kid at stake and their well-being, you get help wherever you think it might happen no matter how much of a prick your pride tells you to be instead.
I know… I know, logically, we will be fine. It’s been 3 weeks, I’ve submitted to over 90 openings, been in one 3 hour interview doing something I’ve never done before, but was eager over the prospect of learning something new, in spite of the long hours. They won’t decide until the 15th of next month, so I’d prefer not to wait. I’ve had a few other promising phone interviews, but its just not happening as fast as I would like it.
I’m really fucking good at what I do, and when I’m not, I’m very independent about figuring it out. I own my mistakes, I’m as honest as I can be within professional constraints. Hire me, dammit!
But then you also start house hunting, and they tell you to get pre-approved, but then they tell you you won’t qualify if you’re not employed… a friend advised just getting up there in the first cheap postage stamp I could rent, and then start looking and this way I would be available for interviews… which sounds great!… until I look at the daily cost. It’s HUGE and its like NO ONE wants to give you a deal for maybe a month. They are hell bent on locking you in for a year or more.
I want as much as possible to buy a real house.
Spawn wants a real house.
I want a real house.
This is where Spawn wants to finish school.
I don’t have much time before Spawn realizes that living with their parent is just not the way they want to do it forever. So before that period, I want them to have the house I’ve never been able to offer so they can decorate and do and make it, into everything they ever dreamed. I want that too.
But first, I want work… or I want both… or I want to not have to worry about both…I don’t know.
What if I’m just not enough for any of this? The last thing I want is my stress to become Spawn’s stress. I wish I knew what to do…
“Maybe being grateful
means recognizing what
you have for what it is,
victories. Admiring the
struggle it takes simply
to be human. Maybe
we’re thankful for the
familiar things we know,
And maybe we’re
thankful for the things
we’ll never know. At the
end of the day, the fact
that we have the
courage to still be
standing in reason
enough to celebrate.”
He was staring at the rain as it pounded down onto the glass. It wasn’t as though he’d never seen rain before, but more that he understood it might be the last time that he would. I watched him from the doorway of his room. I was familiar with the deafening sound of the silence that takes over when a person has reached the acceptance of the end of their journey in this life. The difference for me this time was that I had not accepted his end.
He turned slowly to look at me. His face was drawn, and pale. His presence in the room was so large even as his life force diminished. I could not even force my everything is okay smile. We knew each other much to well to even make the attempt. My throat ached from trying to hold back my tears. He walked towards me holding out his arms, and like a little girl I fell into them weeping uncontrollably.
I wept because I could not take away his fears. I wept because I knew we had reached an ending point, and although he had accepted his journey’s end he was not ready to leave. I wept because I was making him be strong for me, when I should have been being strong for him. Mostly I wept because I didn’t want to let him go.
Love pours through tears. It is so powerful that there is no longer a need for words. It takes over every aspect of your being, and in the moments in between you know that you have been a part of something more beautiful than anything you have the capability to imagine. You have loved unconditionally, and you have been loved equally back. I think the secret to life is the moments in between.
I believe all of us go through various stages of our lives where we look up and suddenly think, “I HATE my life right now.”
I did that just before I got a divorce. I did the same when I hated the job and the town I lived in and just found out I was going to be a parent and moved a couple thousand miles back.
I had the same when Spawn was a few years old and my career was… well, really fucking boring and leaving me strapped. It was mindless, repetitive, and just when I was done and updating my resume, I received a call from a former boss who wanted to lure to me their current company. Not only would I be using more of my brain, it held a significant pay raise.
It was great too, for a while. But one of my co-workers was as mercurial as they come and I was often walking on eggshells. The work itself was great and I was learning a ton, but the environment… not so much. However, a friendly buyout that turned hostile takeover nixed that job for all of us. The best time I had there was when the mercurial one jumped ship early on and the rest of us just didn’t give a shit anymore.
I landed this job right as I was ending that one. The work itself is a mostly mindless again, but the pay, on paper, is better. What I get to take home though, is significantly less than it was at my last job and although I know the benefits are a part of that, I didn’t think they were that big of a chunk.
We’re given no authority over our own position, but then they complain that no one takes initiative. Neither owner can keep their hands out of the cookie jar when things are good, and don’t hesitate to jump your shit when they aren’t. Hell, the CFO’s mom just died last week and one of the owners commented to her yesterday “What the hell is wrong with you, you look like your dog died?” She broke down so badly she had to go home.
Right now, things aren’t so great and its all to do with that fact that when we’re in our busy profitable season, the owners couldn’t buy new toys fast enough, despite my boss continually telling them we would need to sock away what we could for the lean season. They assume no one has their grand vision, so any counsel is ignored.
This is also when I’m told my communication needs work. I’m the connection the outside world comes to when they want information and when things aren’t going so well, that communication increases by several fold. It means I have to come in and choose whether I’m going to do my job or just sit there and get back to people and I do balance both. But the bottom line is I’m never going to be able to make someone happy if I can’t give them what they were promised and that’s what they want me to do.
So I hate my job. I hate where I live. I hate that I hate both so much that I’m both restless and uninspired to do even the little things. I hate the debt I hold for a degree that has proven nothing but worthless and I feel that it will inhibit everything else I do for the rest of my life.
I want to move, I want to have a cafe, on the side of a cliff with a view to the ocean and I want it too fucking cold to see even a single surfer unless they are batshit insane.
But for not, I would settle for moving to the area where I hope my kid’s future school is and get a job that lets me take home the amount I was promised, or at least a significantly bigger portion than current.
I want to get just a little ahead instead of struggling so far behind.
I want to be inspired.
I want to be challenged mentally.
I feel like a corpse in motion.
The Hippy will be unemployed when her and her pornstar (the boyfriend) move back to their home state to await the arrival of their unexpected son or daughter. This is not making her happy at all. She is very prideful and a lot of her self-worth is tied to how much she brings in. Her boyfriend is more the “bitch, get in the kitchen and fix me a sandwich” variety, but I think most of that is just bluster.
Apparently, the point of contention right now is she is trying to demand that they have all joint accounts since they plan on getting married at some point anyway and wants them to have full disclosure on everything. His stance is more “not no, but HELL NO!”
I’m totally making him look bad, but the guy’s mom blew through the nest egg his parents had been stashing away since his birth and even stole money from her son all of his life while still living with them, and did it often. Her son! Stole from her own damn son!
Of course, this is what I pointed out to her when she was choosing to be offended because he flat out denied her this. Of course he would, he has massive trust issues and a lot of stunted maturity to work through. The attitude in my very first paragraph exemplified that alone.
I told her that as an unemployed single mom, which is what she technically is, she was in a better position to qualify for assistance. They already worked out this was going to be the best way for both of them, so hand over her bills that she will still need dealt with and let him handle it. Her contribution is not going to be measured by a paycheck but it was not to be belittled as any less important. In fact, she would be taking the brunt of the worst of it in a way he would never understand.
Their relationship really wasn’t ready to take on a third party really yet. There’s a lot of conflicts of attitudes going on and ways of thinking that don’t align with the two of them. But that’s part of the process. It’s not ideal, but I don’t think its impossible either.
I told her that different couples had many different ways of dealing with money in a way they both can live with. There’s a reason its one of the top five reasons for divorce so don’t make it such a massive issue she wasn’t allowing any flexibility on it.
Three accounts where only one is mutual and the other two are individual would make for a decent compromise, but don’t entangle herself in his finances in any way until after she was working again and off assistance. Whatever people may think about welfare in the US, the organizations that review cases are truly looking for ANY possible way to disqualify you for assistance. They want you talking so you’ll slip up on something, no matter how mundane it may seem. It’s very much like those interrogation rooms on crimes shows only they wear you down by ignoring you in the waiting room for hours first. The snide indifference is completely free.
In the back of my mind though, their relationship is about to go through the biggest hurdle one can and they weren’t on the best ground to begin with. If this whole situation hits shitstorm status, she can at least make a clean break.
Hopeful, yet ever the cynic, I am…
Personally, my former spouse was of the “as long as we have each other, I don’t need money” and I was more the “bitch, I’m not sleeping in a fucking car with you in -30 degree winters, go fucking get a job already or I will tauntaun your ass for warmth” so my perception is a bit different. We did have all combined accounts and expenses and a 17k credit card balance in their name hit my credit rating along with the house they let foreclose… so I’m a bit bitter on the issue myself.
What struggles have you had navigating relationship and finances and how did you handle them? Do you wish you’d done anything differently?
The Hippy and her pornstar have recently decided that moving back to their home state will be much better for them when the baby comes. He will be in a better position to be promoted as his company is based there since she will be unable to work for a while and both of their families are nearby for emotional and possible babysitting support.
The Hippy comes from a “salt of the earth” family that struggled at times to make ends meet. Her dad had a tendency for violence and a bad temper and her mom bent over backwards to appease him. She knows she is a people pleaser directly due to this.
The Pornstar had more a spoiled brat, men are manly men, kind of upbringing with an emotionally abusive mother. This has made him cynical, brooding, bitingly sarcastic, and distant.
I relate to him more since my upbringing more aligned with his, not the wealth, not even two parental figured, but the emotional abuse I completely get. It’s the part that helps me translate him to her. Just below the surface of those biting remarks lies a person who desperately wants her to stay with him forever and loves her very much. Sadly, its written all over his face only when she isn’t looking.
She was starved for acknowledgement, for doting, for expressions of affection. In trying to obtain these things, she was slinging some pretty biting shit to him too, even going so far as to remind him she could do better. She doted, she catered, she ego-stroked, but when he was less than forthcoming in a manner she desired, she would get desperate and then it just got rude.
It’s weird when you have to tell an adult “how would you react if he said that shit to you?” She admitted it would kill her and I had to point out that by doing that she was making it all worse, he would just sink his heels in and tell her to go. It’s what I would do.
This guy is a stud in her eyes, she thinks of him as the hottest thing on the planet. It’s adorable to witness the two of them.
But their ability to communicate… dayum.
I told her that first and foremost, never treat the person you value most like shit. I have never understood why Grand spent more time doting on strangers while treating their family like crap.
I then talked to her about the language of love… yeah, try not to gag. I told her that my cousin and his wife would always get pissed at one another because they spoke their affections in ways the other didn’t notice.
My cousin would buy expensive jewelry for his bride, stressing over every single piece while his wife just wanted him to take out the fucking trash without being asked. Her life was too hectic and busy to wear jewelry except on really rare occasiona so she saw the jewelry as yet another jab of something else that was not much use to her.
When I was laughing at one of their arguments and pointed this out, they both seemed kind of stunned. But I think later on they started paying attention to one another’s methods a bit more.
I pointed out the same kinds of things with Hippy. He was showing it in his own way as we got to talking about, just not the bullshit they have on rom-coms, which is more what she was wanting. Let’s face it, that shit just ain’t realistic.
They both were trying their best to show their affections. But again, they weren’t appreciating the ways one another did it. So I told her, “express a few to him on his level, something he gets, and maybe he’ll start reciprocating and noticing yours.”
Did any of you ever have a miscommunication with your love languages?