Ruminations on Keeping Your Life in Perspective

I had a conversation with a friend that I used to work with this afternoon and I kind of dropped the doom and gloom bomb on him.  It started out as a pleasant enough conversation where you would be expected to say, “Hello” “How are you” “Fine” “Good”, and go on with your day, but I’ve got to be honest- I wasn’t feeling the plastic smile today.

I told him that I was still having difficulty finding a full-time job and we discussed the state of the country (you’ve heard that ad nauseam) and he told me that he was sorry that I was having a rough time.  The moment that he said that he was sorry, something snapped into place in my brain.  Yes, I’m working seasonally at a Michael’s to try to lessen the amount of money that I need to beg from my mother.  Yes, I’m spending too many hours of the day feeling defeated and worthless.  Yes, I’m desperate to find a direction and get back to some sense of security.  But all of that doesn’t matter.

I’m still alive.  I have a mother who is willing to support me as long as she can.  My Brothers, sister, and father are still alive and well.  My car is running and my cats are alive- I don’t exactly have the elements there to make a very good country song.  So, in my eastern way, I felt guiltier for feeling downtrodden when I’m not really that bad off.  Don’t get me wrong, it’s not good, but things could be a lot worse.

On the way home from work, this was part-time job number two, I was stuck in traffic and listening to an NPR report on the “It Gets Better” campaign on You Tube.  This is a beautiful sentiment.  Tell the gay and lesbian teenagers and children who are feeling that there is no way that the world would get any better that there is a light at the end of the tunnel.  I just wished that I could share in his certainty.  I’m seeing a very long and dark tunnel in front of me.

Maybe I listen to the news too much, but there isn’t a whole lot of happy out there.  The most upbeat story I’ve seen is about the impending rescue of the 33 miners who have been stuck in the collapsed mine for 2 and a half months.  There is very little evidence that the economy is recovering.  For every report I listen to about unemployment rates it seems like there is an opposite report telling us that the same number of jobs have been lost.  Healthcare is still in the crapper, social security will still be going broke shortly, and all of those politicians who are supposed to be fixing this mess are too busy jockeying for position as we near the interim elections.

Am I the only person who is tired of the crap?!  I’m no more a fan of the Republicans, Democrats, or TEA Party TEAbaggers of this country than any other normal person out there.  Though, on a side note- I did chuckle like a little girl when they started to call themselves Teabaggers.  My point is- all of these people who are there to represent us are either too busy trying to get something done ( **cough** ) or just really suck at communicating to us that they give a crap and are trying.

I am a single, white, female living alone in a city with 2 cats and no job and sadly I’m a-typical at this moment.  There are so many other people out there who haven’t got jobs and are about to be evicted or foreclosed on.  There are children who are watching their families deteriorate under the strain that 1 or 2 of their parents are under due to layoff or the collapse of their entire financial house of cards.

Is this what it was like in the Great Depression?  I can’t even begin to understand what my grand parents and great grandparents went through, but to think that it took a war to spur enough economic growth to pull the country out of it scares me.  We are already at war.  We are fighting in Afghanistan and we are fighting at home.  My theory on this?  Well, I haven’t got one, but I think that we should ask ourselves one question- What Would Henry Ford Do, or WWHFD!!!


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