Thankfully, I’m experienced in the ways of the unemployed because it just happened again. Believe me, my first response was, “Lord, I’m getting too old for this shit.”
I kept that to myself, however, when they took me downstairs away from everyone else to tell me my job was being “eliminated.” I’ve never liked that word. It sounds a lot like getting rid of something distasteful. Like waste or vomit or something. So, I just sort of sat there wondering how I was going to drive home and tell my husband. I've always left a job on my terms. I’ve never been eliminated before.
My husband was a champ. He said all the right things like he’ll be glad I’m home so he can see more of me. Don’t be hasty. File for unemployment and relax for a little while. Now I can help him with his upholstery work. I shouldn’t feel bad; it’s not my fault. He loves me. We’ll be fine.
Believe me, I was grateful for that reaction. Deep down I know he’s right and this time could be really crucial in my life. Maybe it’s time I went in a completely different direction. Working at newspapers is precarious for just about anyone these days. Why not change it up?
Besides, even when I’m employed I still scour help wanted ads. I just like reading all the possibilities. It’s a little different now, though. Now I’m reading them pretty closely.
It’s sort of hilarious when I think about how I approach the classified section.
I’ll see a position for a dog groomer and think to myself, “I could do that.” Or for a phlebotomist and I’ll wonder, “Hmm, they make decent money. Maybe I should apply. Working at a hospital would probably be a smart idea.” And then I remember that you first have to be trained before you stick needles into people. Or I see an ad for a chef and think, “I’m pretty good in the kitchen. Everybody likes my roasted Brussels sprouts. I should go down there and apply.”
This time around, I hope to find a job that means something, a job where I feel really fulfilled at the end of the day. Something where I actually help people. I think that’s what I’d like. Of course, I won’t make a cent from this imaginary job because why would I start that now? Besides, I think the job I just described sounds like being a parent and I’m already employed in that field.
For the immediate future, I’m going to take a walk and go to the library. I’m going to make myself a really good sandwich for lunch and then I’m going to call a friend. I might even take a really hot, long bath with a glass of wine. And then I’ll read the help wanted ads again. I’m sure someplace is looking for a 53-year-old woman with arthritis, wide hips and a good head on her shoulders.