I have been without work for 4 months today.
On the positive side, I have been able to have some much needed rest. I haven’t had to wake up at 4 a.m. ish since then. My body clock has adjusted or righted itself to a 6:30 a.m. – 7 a.m. rise. I go to bed around 10. Finally, after years like a normal person. I go to the gym. I eat healthy food – read I have not gained weight at home.
On the negative side, I walk less. I try but most days can’t get in near the amount of walking I did when I worked. I would have thought I would have been improving significantly. I am stressed but in a different way. I need and want to work.
My walking has impacted my job search. I know the first interview I went on was ageism and the “disability”. They couldn’t get me out of there fast enough. Other ones have been more subtle. I had two companies that I went through several phone interviews. I had to get on a shuttle bus for one. When I was well I couldn’t get in those. Ask anyone who ever had to take an airport shuttle with me. The second one was the same day as the shuttle one. I wobbled. I need to use the cane. It is stylish. I try to wear non cloddy oxfords. I wear loose pants over the spectral leg. I disclaim that when I worked I took two subways everyday! I work into the conversation how many steps I walk in a day – over 8,000. This is seriously more than most “well” people do.
I have explored some opportunities on Long Island where I live. The company recruiters have been upfront with me. I am not cheap. However, I have lots of experience and am excellent at what I do. I had several conversations with a major national company out here that would have met my salary requirements. I didn’t have to walk as my experience in and of itself was kind of threatening. I was OK . I made it through phone interviews to an in person assessment. One person saw me with the cane. And I walked well! We had a really great conversation. I had the experience and the approach they wanted. This company told me when they made the initial call that they raised the salary because they knew with my experience, it was expected. I received the standard thanks but no thanks e-mail today. I am finding it really hard to take. My husband says it wasn’t my walking but the expense. I don’t know. I usually believe everything happens for a reason. Numerous times in the past I have not been offered jobs that I wanted and maybe should have had and it all worked out. Sometimes, I didn’t see it at the time but later I did, including two jobs at the World Trade Center where in all likelihood and seriousness, I would have died.
Finding work has always been hard for me. This time has been easier for me in a certain way. I almost always have something in the pipeline. Years ago, I was almost always one of two and almost always came in 2nd. I don’t know where I am now. Last time I had a termination like this it took me almost ten years to get back to where I was. I don’t have the time, money or energy for that.
Normally, I take these setbacks in stride. I was relatively calm four months ago. Today I wept. I almost never cry about anything. My husband was lost. I am the strong one. I don’t get blue. I snap back. It’s freaking hard.
It looks like I need to head back into NY. Like Willie Sutton said, “that’s where the money is.” I was liking sleeping like a normal person.
I am trying to find that resilience. I know I am a resilient personality. It’s hard. It takes energy. It takes faith.. If I don’t use the cane, I’ll lurch more. I don’t know how else to address this. My mind is fine. I feel “normal” until I stand up. I forget my physical limitations. For the past month or so, in my dreams I find myself walking. I wake and am crushed.
Digging down to get out.