Monday, January 28, 2013

A Two Plus Week Progress Report

It has already been two plus weeks since my husband’s lay-off.  As anyone will tell you that has gone through this process, it is a challenge to face one’s fears about securing another job and the concerns that the lay-off perhaps was done in response to something that you did or failed to do.  Younger people seem to come with a knowledge base that it took your whole career to glean. Competition is ever there to tell you that with your years you might be less than what is needed now. Facts tell a different story.  A vibrant company we learned is constantly cutting 10% of their overhead, and this includes positions (i.e. people).

We are facing this as a family. My eldest daughter is still at home with us, and her help has been invaluable.  Resumes are no longer a detailed history of your life, but are short reads now to accommodate the quick world that we live in.

My husband is almost ready to set out the door to seek a job to fit what he is now, a less energetic and less naïve, but wiser business man.  We worked together as a family to fill out his talent sheets for the job counseling service so generously offered by his company.This is not a time when he can generate his accomplishments without some support and encouragement from us who want to brag about him. His talents are many, not least of which is to head this rather complex household.

We put our thoughts into imagined business terms, and sure enough, out flows what he has tucked away and failed to brag about. He lists the ways he has benefited his company over his many years of work. We are impressed and so is he.  This is what he will take with him to move ahead.

Waves of insecurity rise here and there and are all but laughable.  I concern myself with potentially living in China with no Amercan style porcelain toilets, or in a one room apartment, as I mentally leave our beautiful but modest Little House, complete with my sewing studio and wonderful array of collected materials.  My husband has no wish to move elsewhere either, and we are grateful that the expenses of our Little House are so small that even my daughter could afford to stay here and keep our home warm as we entertain moving temporarily to where a job can be found.  We fear that the choices may be limited by his age.

The week brings about another crisis of sorts.  My regular doctor was determined to be a specialist and not allowed to continue seeing me and others with my condition as we are now "consult" patients.  He left this practice but is unable to establish the private practice he had planned, at least for a time, and has left many of his patients wondering how and where to get needed services.  He is a rare doctor indeed at least in our area, and I begin the search for affordable care and medications. I have to laugh that we are in between insurances for the first time in twenty-two plus years.  It never rains but what it pours! It is best that I be positive about how close I have come to the end of my long term treatment, and so I reassure my doubting self that my treatment might be sufficient even if cut short.

It is funny how crisis causes a person to focus on what is essential. We are doing just that and trying to carry on with the day-to-day activities. I quite forgot, I still have taxes to figure, and much sewing to do. I also notice that every few days I must sew for my own good. It feeds my soul. I am realistic that my productivity has been cut a bit short by our current survival process and am glad for my recent reading of Surviving Survival  by L Gonzales. He talks about the attributes found in  people who overcome odds of whatever sort.  I have taken careful notes and check myself and the family.

The author tells that one must start with a strong sense of self.  He defines this as a person with the following characteristics: (I do hope the author will forgive me if my interpretation of his writings are not exactly in line with his.  But this is what I understood him to say.)
1) A healthy balance of rational and emotional thinking, with the rational not letting emotions run away with you and yet trusting what your instinctive reactions and fear might have to tell you. Check. We all seem to have a healthy dose of both sides to our brain functioning.

2) "Continuity of person" from one moment to the next, and year to year,  flowing continuously versus interrupted and unpredictable.  Weak.  I am anything but a continual flow.  Our life filled with much that is unpredictable, like serious health issues and other things beyond our control (lightening, tornado etc.). Through it all we continually struggle on and don’t give up. Perhaps we are better than I thought, despite our challenges. Check.

3) "Embodiment or being at home in my own body".  Weak, but getting stronger with treatment.  Exercise will help this as my treatments effects lessen and my stamina increases.  An area to work on. We are all at home however at Little House.

4) "Privacy", as defined as control over my own space. Check.  I do try hard to take control of what I can and my organization for the life ahead is my strength. Prayer is no small part of this. My family likewise, though my eldest daughter sometimes operates in such fast lane, that she is behind in care of her own space and yet she has some organization midst the clutter.

5) "Social embedding", meaning attaching to relatives and friends for support.  Check.  No matter how isolated my illness has made me, I reach out and stay connected, often by phone and internet these days as opposed to in person.  My family is good on this count as well.

6) "Free will/ autonomous career".  I am autonomous only with the support of my family, but they are there and my independent spirit is fierce.  An area to continue to work on. My family is more autonomous than me, fortunately.

7) "Self-awareness". Double check, a strength of mine.  My family isn't so bad in this area either.

There is much more to being a survivor, but will leave that for my next blog.  My Valentine’s Day Sale sewing is progressing, and there is much to do yet to prepare. We are planning on getting it all posted this next week and so do keep watch.  I am trying out some new items and will be anxious to see what you all think of them.

Thank you, my readers for your prayers, support and encouragement. It is much appreciated!