Only 5 more days until Christmas! Why is it that Christmas comes on the same day each year, yet I am still never quite ready for it?
This year's Christmas is a little harder than Christmases past. You see, this year I am out of work like so many other people in this country.
I worked at my last job for five years and I enjoyed what I did. However, the longer I was there, the less valued I began to feel. I took on all sorts of new challenges willingly, but I rarely heard a "thank you" or a "we appreciate all you do". That's all I wanted. Not a raise (though a raise would have been nice since I had not had a raise in over 3 years), not a bonus, nothing but a kind word of thanks. I never got it. In fact, I often got "the shaft", such as having hours/students taken away from me and given to a new hire. The final straw came when I was replaced with no warning and no explanation as the teacher of the SAT prep class that I had taught for three years. I decided that it was time for me to move on so I gave my notice. Not once did my supervisor ask me why I was leaving, nor did she ask what she could do to make me stay. I had so many mixed emotions. I was happy to be moving on, scared that I was leaving my comfort zone, and sad that I didn't seem to be missed at a place I had called home for 5 years.
People told me that I was crazy to leave my job without another one lined up. I thought that they were crazy and I would have no problem finding a new job. Boy, was I wrong. I have sent in resumes and applications to so many places that I have lost count.
I will be the first to admit that we are not destitute without my job. My husband has a good job and we still have a roof over our heads and food on the table. That's more than a lot of people have right now. However, it's getting harder to get by. My credit card bills (which are huge since I racked up a huge amount of debt in my younger, stupider days) keep coming in, and my student loan payments keep coming due so it's becoming more difficult to keep up with those and still pay for everyday things too.
So we may not have as many gifts under the tree this year. That's OK. We may not have money to travel as much as we once did. That's OK too. What we do have are wonderfully supportive friends and family. I also have the chance to see this as an opportunity for growth. I am now free to persue other interests and bigger and better jobs that I couldn't before. I have time off for the holiday season so I can enjoy my friends and family without worrying about going to work.
I will say that a job opportunity has come about, but it is still in the early stages so I don't want to jinx it. But keep your fingers crossed for me!