Posts Tagged With: finances

each story is different

Thing 2’s restaurant closed and she’s without income.
She saved money, but during this time of no income, she’s had to dip into her savings. She needed groceries and vodka, she ordered some carry out, she bought loo paper and deodorant. You know, things we all need.

Before the world went sideways, she and two friends began looking at houses for rent planning to move in June.
Of course being out of work means no money coming in, and dipping into her savings means there’s less savings for deposits and pet fees and the like.

She was having trouble with the unemployment website and expressed her concerns. She had exhausted all her options and no matter how many times she tried, she got stopped at a certain point in the process. The error message was that her social security number was invalid. She said to me, “I don’t exist.”
Saturday afternoon, YBW and I did a bit of research and got on the phone with her. Together, the three of us were able to figure out how to get past that point. Turns out it had nothing to do with her ssn and everything to do with the reason for seeking unemployment benefits. Once she got past that hurdle, everything seemed OK.
Now she waits.
She’s applying for jobs.
Literally all the jobs. From grocery store cashier to the person who assembles the device that lowers coffins into graves.

YBW and I have each said however much it sucks, we’re so pleased she lives at her dad’s and doesn’t have to worry about paying to live with no income.
She appreciates having a roof over her head that she’s not financially responsible for. She understand some people aren’t as fortunate as she is.
I don’t write this as a comparison to another’s experience, I’m simply telling her story.

As much as Thing 2 desires and honestly needs to get out of her father’s house, the timing couldn’t be worse.
Her friends with whom she’s moving are both still working. Still earning money, still padding their savings.
Thing 2 said she doesn’t want to ‘get left behind’. She wants to figure a way to make this work.
I offered to help her financially, emotionally, etc.
I know I can only help her so much. I know she has to do things for herself.

It’s hard to watch her work so hard and be thwarted by circumstances beyond her control.
She’s talking about school. More seriously than she ever has before.
She wants to study funeral services. This is something she’s been talking about rather seriously for about two years.
She and I did some research and traded links in emails all afternoon Saturday.
She has anxiety about the financial aspect of going to school.
I can’t alleviate all that anxiety, but I can help.

She finally decided to get her mental and physical health in order. She finally decided to get her living arrangements in order. She’s doing some seriously hard work.
Sometimes hard work looks like one step forward, two steps back.
This looks a bit more like one step forward, five steps back.
She’s looking for work.
She’s applied for unemployment.
She’s hopeful money from the government will help.

We were talking about the differences between what’s going on here and what’s going on in Canada and I said I read that the checks from the US government are essentially tax credits meant to offset 2020 federal income taxes.

Sunday morning she sent this in the group chat.

You can see that Thing 1 has some pretty strong opinions about this.

The Things and I talked about how things work in our country. We talked about each other. We talked about the state of the world.

It seems to me we’re all so good at seeing things from our own point of view, especially now when we’re staying put more than ever before. But I find it helpful to experience things from other points of view. I like understanding what other people think and feel. Asking questions, getting answers, learning opinions.
I know so many of us are blogging about it.
I asked and received Thing 2’s consent to write about this.

Every story is different.
We each go through this in our own way.
Sharing our experiences helps everyone.
This is our life.

Categories: me | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

why am I always surprised?

I’m always surprised. You’d think after 26 years I would have figured it out…but no, every single time, I’m surprised.

My former husband called me Friday and said: happy Easter. (Aww, that was kind…did I mention I should have known better than to think is was sincere?)
After a brief time of catching up, he asks if I know what Thing 1 did.
Uh…no.
Well it seems she went to the emergency room and the bill showed up at his house as that’s the one listed on her driver’s license. So he wants to know what I’m going to do about the bill.
Pardon?

I suggest we have a mini discussion about it with Thing 1, see if we can come up with a plan all together. (I mean if she’s off shacked up with this guy, why are we still financially responsible for her?)

Then he begins to talk about Thing 2 and how bad her anxiety has become.
I suggest he take her to the doctor. He has no idea what that means…no idea where to start. I suggest he take her to the family practitioner and go from there…and when he hems and haws I remind him that he’s the parent and he has to be responsible for her. Which kind of turns into a bigger discussion than he’s interested in so he hustles off the phone but not before he says he’ll call me back. (He doesn’t.)

Saturday morning I get a call from Thing 1, guns a’ blazing. She’s all bent because, “Daddy told me you said send the bill to me. How am I supposed to pay it?”
Whoa there sister.
I do a little damage control and move on.

I call her father (who conveniently doesn’t answer) and leave a message.
When he finally calls me back, I’m like, what’s your deal?
He says: Well I was mad at you so I called Thing 1. (You stupid, passive aggressive, manipulative jackass!)
I stop him right there and say, “You have got to get it together! Be a grown up, be a man! If you are angry with me, you talk to ME! Not our children! You’re up my ass about money but can’t be bothered to discuss what’s going on with Thing 2. You’ve made a huge mess down there and you are going to have to clean it up.”
He is quiet, then he makes excuses, then he apologizes. (The apology is meaningless, he just says it out of habit, to end the conversation.)

I honestly don’t understand. Any of it really. Starting with the fact I thought he was a grown up all those long years ago and ending with how I continue to ask myself, why did I choose to remain blind for so long?

I made a promise to remain hands off in the fall when he and Thing 2 decided she didn’t need a mommy in her life.
I made that promise to myself. I vowed not to clean up whatever mess they made. It has made for some harrowing moments for me…but I am sticking to it.
The problem is they’ve made a bigger mess than I could have ever imagined. Thing 2 will suffer for it, but she is choosing to…
He has no idea how to be a parent other than to provide food and shelter…that’s all he’s ever done.
The thing that frustrates me the most is the fact he won’t admit he’s cocked it up. He would rather let it all burn than admit he’s made a mess and try and figure out how to clean it up…or ask for help cleaning it up.

He called me under the guise of happy Easter, my beloved Easter. And I was surprised when it went down the rabbit hole. (Shame on me.)
When will I stop being surprised? Why do I continue to give the benefit of the doubt?

I am so much better off away from that toxicity.
I’ve thrown my baby a life raft, she’s choosing not to take it.
It’s time to sink or swim.
My friend and mentor has told me I built her foundation and she’ll be successful in spite of all this…I trust that.

I’m so disappointed in myself for believing so long that he is something he’s not…I believed the facade I helped create.

Categories: divorce, me, on being a mom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

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