Thursday, February 11, 2010

In Which I Want to Crawl in a Hole and Disappear - and also some happy thoughts

I've had a very bad day.

This morning I was brought to tears by my bank balance - that which is whittling away as I wait for my first unemployment check, work a measly 15 hours a week at a part-time job (which I LOVE btw), and wait to hear if I get the promotion to full-time manager at said job, which they won't decide until April.

I've been in similar situations before, watching a waning account balance while unemployed... and the sweet Lord has always provided for me in amazing ways.

In my heart, I know I'll be okay through the grace of God - but I struggle with thoughts that I should be better at providing for myself. I did not lose my job on account of being a bad employee. I lost it because the city for which I worked had to make severe budget cuts. Still, it hurts my pride all the same.

Then, after drying my tears and struggling with fears of becoming homeless I got a message from my part-time job. Now I was faced with the decision of covering a 4-hour shift which would result in $40 being added to my account balance - or - staying home to apply for 5 jobs so that I qualify for this week's unemployment benefits equaling $150. Some choice... work to provide for myself - or - apply for jobs that don't even meet my qualifications.

I stayed home and wrote meaningless cover letters.

I don't know for certain how I am going to make ends meet. As I considered this, my thoughts strayed to the one thing that disappoints me about my Church. The one area where the Catholic church falls down in comparison to other denominations is helping those in need. Yes, the church funds Project Rachel, and supports food banks and homeless shelters. Catholic Charities handles most assistance needs, but it would be great if the people you worship with would extend a helping hand -or at least a comforting shoulder- to those sitting right in their midst who need help and support. (and let me tell you, my parish is filled with very wealthy folks. I think, the sort who would never imagine that someone 'just like them' by all appearances is in such a bad way.)

I have a friend at my church who is going through a very tough time - she has a small child and she's greatly pregnant and dealing with a huge personal crisis. Many people at church have an idea what she is going through. They know I am her friend and they ask me if she is okay and what they can do to help. (she is hiring help and has family flying in to help when the baby is born.)

The same people also know that I am unemployed for the second time in 2.5 years. But they don't ask me how they can help. I'm sure they are praying that I will find a suitable job - but that doesn't give me immediate help.

And I hate that I am even considering the idea of being a charity case - but it is getting that bad right now.

Oddly, my pregnant-personal-crisis-friend has great financial resources. She has asked me to help her with some projects - and I gladly do. Then before I leave she writes me a check to 'pay' me. I don't want her money -- but today I appreciate the fact that we are helping one another in the ways that we each need to be helped. In ways we are each capable of helping.

I guess I am just saying that we should all try to be aware of what those around us are going through - and offer to help. Even it's just taking that person out to lunch - or slip them a gift card to the grocery store. (I checked - I don't seem to qualify for food stamps - though I don't understand how they came to that conclusion)

On a more uplifting note - I have a bloggy award!
Stacey at Stacey's Thoughts on Infertility seems to LIKE me! I am so thrilled for her right now - as she is finally, cautiously embarking on that nine month journey to a real live miracle - child to love!!

To me she has bestowed the Sugar Doll Award.
I am not sure of the criteria - but I do graciously accept!The rules are simply to copy the award to your own blog, tell your readers 10 things about yourself, and pass it along!

So, 10 things about me:

1. I can’t think of any single thing that would inspire me to run. Including impending death.

2. I don’t wear pink. Not no way, not no how.

3. I love the sound of a helicopter flying over my roof. Hard to explain. It’s some sort of thrill. I have lived near hospitals and under the Police Chopper flight path in my last four apartments (3 cities) – so the sound makes me feel at home now.

4. I don’t cook. I don’t enjoy it – it’s a chore. Many friends assume this means I can’t cook. Silly. I can follow directions just like anyone else. When I do cook – it’s very good. I’d just rather make food for 20 people than for one. It makes it worth the effort expended.

5. If sleeping soundly were an Olympic event, I’d be Michael Phelps. If a burning house and four fire trucks outside my window can’t wake me – what confidence can I place in three alarm clocks?

6. I’m so not afraid of heights that it’s dangerous. I love heights. Particularly precarious heights. I once stood atop each presidential head on Mount Rushmore. At one point I was so close to the precipice of Jefferson’s forehead that a Park Ranger tied a rope around me.

7. I really thought I’d be married and have kids by now. Like 7 years ago. I’m sort of pissed that I don’t get what everyone else gets in life. Not for lack of trying.

8. I was completely distraught when, in treatment of hip pain, my chiropractor suggested that I wear only flat shoes for a few months. MONTHS?!

9. I kind of enjoy losing control while driving on ice, because I get a little thrill from recovering. No fun if you crash.

10. Animals personified make me laugh every time. Always. A dog in a hat. An animated animal reading the newspaper or wearing an apron… hilarious. The catch is, I am now so accustomed to Brian/Family Guy being personified, that I crack up when he does something canine.

I'd like to give this award to some bloggy friends who charm the heck out of me!

Have a Cute Day - so inspirational!
The Nester - I'd like to steal her house!
Jennifer at Conversion Diary - she's a former atheist who has converted to Catholicism. Blessed with incredible writing skills she has the ability to inspire cradle Catholics like myself to believe and serve better!
Genevra at Conversations with Myself - someone I want to know IRL!
and speaking of wanting to know In Real Life - I'm dying to meet Erin Ann especially once she's back from Haiti!

These are the folks that help me entertain my unemployed mind with all this time off!! Can I also blame them for me being internet addicted and out of shape?


Anonymous said...

The book of James has some interesting insight into the actions motivated by faith of a believer. Off the top of my head it says something like if someone is cold don't just say to them, here's a coat, give him a coat.

I think what you two women are doing for each other is a much deeper expression of faith and commitment to the Christian life. I believe the Apostle Paul actually said something to the effect that we needed to care for each other. Can't remember the exact words, but pieces of it are rolling around in my head.

Wish I could send a check or some resource. I'm a hypocrite ... I can only pray for you.

Anonymous said...

Oops, I meant, don't just say, go in peace I'll pray for you. Give them a coat.

TRS said...

Thanks Knot! Please though, I am certainly not soliciting for donations here.
I'm just sharing my experience as a learning opportunity for all of us. And I guess I had to get it off my chest.

after all - I'm no better, when I meet a homeless person on the street corner, I give them a buck, I don't take them out to lunch.
On the other hand, it is different concerning people we actually know. When it is easier to know the need and reach out in some way.

And even in my position, I'm better off than many many other people.

Steamed Dumpling said...

I wonder if it has something to do with your single status. My friends with children have had tons of help from their parish. In form of monetary donations, food, furniture and even a car! I've been amazed at the blessings they've received. Will pray that you find something more stable soon.

Elaine said...

That makes me so sad that your church won't help you with your situation! At our church, it seems everyone wants a slice of charity pie even if they don't need it! And that makes me mad... They don't need it and the people who do can't say anything because the "charity cases" are hogging all of the church's time. Ugh.

I'm really sorry you're going through a tough time. We are currently going through a sensitive financial crisis too. The Lord always provides a way though.

TRS said...


I think you're right. I think that the Married-with-Children types somehow figure that since I don't have other mouths to feed that it can't be that bad. Whereas I see it as... I don't have a spouse making up for the loss of my income - only ME to take care of myself so I have even MORE pressure.
Honestly, sometimes I think people can only see as far as their own circumstances!!

Thanks everyone for your prayers!!

Genevra said...

Ahh dang it! I just typed a comment and somehow lost it. Sigh.

I'm so sorry to hear about the frustration and how there is not a lot of support withstanding. :( That truly breaks my heart. I think the comment about the Marrieds-with-Children not figuring you need help badly since it is only you is so true. And it irks me. Greatly. You actually need as much help or more, since you don't have a significant other to help shoulder the load, bring in some money or be of moral support since you are in it together. Nor do mortgages/rent, car payments, utilities, Dr fees, etc come cheaper because you are single. I mean I rarely hear of singles discounts.

I will continue to prayer for you my friend.

Thank you so much for the blog award. That is so exciting and touching! I would love to meet you in real life too. :)

Pablo said...

I think they should help you in some way,they could be the "hands of God" on Earth, but sometimes (for some reason)"all we have" is God, and that is the best that could happen.

Stacey said...

Well, of course I like you! :) Thanks for participating. I like learning new things about bloggy pals!

I want you to know how sorry I am that you are going through a hard time right now. I certainly do agree that churches should be more present in communities today, willingly helping those in need.

I'm keeping you in my prayers, friend!

P.S. I agree with you entirely about running. UGH. And you are so much more of a thrill-seeker than I am! :)