First off, sending thoughts and prayers to those who have had to evacuate in the southern US. I can’t help but see the echoes of Katrina, so it makes me happy to see everyone working in advance. Still, the fact of it is that people had to leave their homes. Economic times are already tough, then you add in this. I feel for them. When I imagine how we’d do if it were our family, things would be hard, whether we were fleeing from nature or something else. The financial impact would be very crushing.
And that doesn’t even touch on the emotional and pyschological impact.
It’s Labor Day today. Now here’s a thought… I saw one headline this morning that says things are worse for the American worker. Speaking for our little part of the world, I’d have to agree with that. People are continuing to lose jobs, businesses are shutting down, and, as my husband pointed out last night, a lot of empty commercial properties are just staying empty. Then you look at our situation and the erosion of the benefits we receive. Pay raises haven’t even kept up with inflation for the state employees here, plus they’ve begun cutting benefits. A lot of folks think state employees are given more than they deserve – we see this in comments all the time. It’s interesting, because it’s based on perception, not reality…. But you know how it goes when you try to point that out… Not so hot.
For the first time ever, I had to write a letter to the school district asking for help. I need to call on Tuesday to back that call up. Todd has applied for a second part-time job to help us out. I’d do it, but I can’t even seem to get all my reading done right now. Even if he doesn’t get the job, we’ve got a lot to do in order to hang on until financial aid in January… then it’s hanging on until next summer, when my next series of classes start after spring semester… And so on.
Add to that the fact that I can’t seem to connect up with libraries here, not unless I want to volunteer, and I’m feeling the pain of it all. I feel like we’re going to be forced to move, no matter what we do and I really don’t want to leave our family here.
I’m trying to maintain my optimism, my hope, that the next couple of years will see a turn-around in the economic situation here. I can’t put all this time and energy into something for the future, only to see it derailed by the fact that I can’t get experience…
Tomorrow I will call the school district and talk to them about our oldest. We need to have him going with his group five days a week, not the four that we signed up for. We are struggling to pay for the four days and now I have to find a way to stretch to five. I look at our bank account and the finite resources we have to take care of everything… and I’m worried.
It doesn’t seem like it’d take much for us to be not making it at all. I try to imagine what we’ll do in that scenario. I honestly don’t know. I have no back-up plan in place. We’re just over the income limits for assistance, and by that I mean by literally just a hundred dollars or so each month. All we can do is try to get our financial aid adjusted…
ok. The baby is up and so is Todd. We have to drive him to work in a bit. I need to clean out the bills and make my list of things that will be paid tomorrow. Maybe a miracle will happen at my work. Maybe a miracle will happen at Todd’s. Maybe I’ll find everything I can to sell on Craigslist. That’d be a better solution – and likely more realistic at this point…
Tomorrow is a new day, right? One thing… I know it’s unrealistic, but I really wish someone would be voted into office who has been in our shoes, the shoes of all the people out here that are truly impacted by energy and rising food costs. I’d love to see someone at the top who’s had to cancel Christmas or who couldn’t pay the heating bill one month.
Ah, but I’m feeling pessimistic this morning. That’s the truth of it.
Maybe I’ll feel better tomorrow morning.
Happy Labor Day.