If you read my posts you know that in February I was layed off from my job. I had been there for almost 13 years and at my previous job for 10. I was a government contractor and since there have been so many federal budget cuts, we lost most of our funding. I had never been layed off before in my life. At 49 years old, it is a scary prospect. I earned the majority of the income for our family. I received a small severance and then had to go onto unemployment. I have been looking for a job for months now. I don't possess an advanced degree and have back issues or I would have taken a retail job a long time ago while still hunting for something better. My stupid back doesn't allow me to stand for much longer than 15 minutes at a time. (I've had two back surgeries and will eventually need the whole rod, plates, screws combo when I have a multi-vertebral fusion.) In August my husband's car died and he has taken over mine since we can't afford another. We have drained everything we had, even the $1000.00 we had put aside for a down payment on a new car. Unemployment has now run out and we have a choice of paying utilities or our mortgage payment. They are roughly the same. After we pay one or the other we will have a whopping $200.00 left over.
I don't want people's pity. I have worked since I was 15 years old and never expected something like this to happen. I haven't wanted to share how grave our situation is with our friends. I know that they will all try to "fix" the situation, but the only "fix" is my getting a job and it may have to be within walking distance, since I don't see us able to buy a car in quite a while. I don't share my worries with my husband right now, because he is working so hard and stressing out, too. Besides God, my saving grace has been my therapist that works on a sliding scale. She will even forgo payment and let me pay her when I can afford to. I vent to her, share my worries and work on steps to help me manage the depression. She is my life raft. God and my therapist!
I know that we aren't alone, going through such difficult times. I humble myself before you because I want you to know that there are families EVERYWHERE that are going through things like this. For several years we have worked with the low income and homeless through our church and other groups. It has been my wish to have my daughter see homeless and the poor as real people and not as society's throwaways. We have been so fortunate in our lives up to now. Regardless, I know that God is with us, no matter what happens.
Wherever you live or however much money you make, do something kind for someone less fortunate than you. There are millions of people in our own country that are in need. Sometimes it isn't money that they need. Sometimes it is the person next door that is going through a hard time and just needs someone to hear them or hug them. Bring cookies to the elderly lady across the street whose husband passed away and is now on her own. I know Christmas is coming, but remember that there are eleven other months in the year. Those same folks are still in need after you've packed up your Christmas decorations. Find causes you are passionate about and support them. Some of my favorites are listed below. Feel free to check them out.
May you all be blessed, today and everyday!