Monday, September 6, 2010

More than a dozen -ATIONS

devastation | isolation | desolation | mortification | relaxation | stagnation | inspiration | jubilation | humiliation | mastication | rumination | consolation | determination | motivation | information | invocation | dedication

When I was told that my services were no longer necessary I was devastated. I was 2 months shy of 20 years of service. I have been living with this devastation for a couple of months now and it’s not getting any easier. Unemployment sucks!!! The days all look the same when the deadlines and meetings and commute are gone. Yes I chose the things most people dislike about their jobs because I even miss that part of working.

Unemployment is a lonely place. Many days I don’t see anyone but my son. Employers now require that you apply for jobs online so you don’t even get to talk to someone when you hand over a resume or fill out an application. All communications with your contacts, your network, are via email or Facebook or phone. It’s not the same as face to face. I miss talking to people. I miss faces. The ISOLATION can be very wearing.

I know it is work to find work, but it is becoming work to avoid feelings of utter DESOLATION. Friday I had feelings of dread and I couldn’t figure out what the problem was. Then it hit me; I will be jobless on Labor Day for the first time since I started working. A three-day weekend doesn’t mean anything to someone who has no place to go when it’s over. I talked to my Dad this weekend and he understood saying, “Retirement robbed me of all my holidays.”

I haven’t done a very good job of shaking the sadness this weekend. Saturday I went with a friend to the library to get her son his first library card and borrow a movie for Sunday, turns out they live a couple of blocks out of the library’s service area and have to go to the next town over for a card. After that bit of disappointment we went out for lunch and she paid for my son and me. I am grateful but not paying was fuel for the gloom.

Sunday we went to Mass where they talked about the dignity of work. Let the water works begin. Several people spoke about finding God in their work. One man spoke about the Saturday morning Job Support Group at the parish. The face is a bit moist now. A woman who works in HR talked about having to break the news to people that their services were no longer needed and how she works on the other side of transition at a local Career Center. Hearing about the dire circumstances other people were in when they lost their jobs really got the tears flowing. And when she told people to maybe take an unemployed person’s kids out for lunch I lost it.

After the homily we stand for prayers. When it is time for communion we sit down and wait our turn to go up and receive the body and blood of Christ. I was so lost in thought about my coming week that I remained standing longer than I should have. We were in the third row of a large church and some people behind me were laughing. MORTIFICATION.

After Mass I talked to a few friends as my son played with their kids. Eventually he was running in the sanctuary behind the altar. DOUBLE MORTIFICATION. He knows better and this will not be tolerated so his Wii privileges were revoked for a week.

The murkiness of the weather and my foul mood made it hard to concentrate on anything so I decided it was time to give up and watch the movie we had borrowed from the library. It was Doctor Doolittle, the original with Rex Harrison. I thoroughly enjoyed reminiscing about my cousins Pushmi-Pullyu doll. I used to be so jealous. I remember it could talk and it was very well loved.

If you’re interested you can get one of your own from Chatty Cathy Dolls. They sold a mint condition Pushmi-Pullyu, in the original unopened box, for $299.99. They have others items from the movie but I doubt they would be in the original unopened box.

After the movie we ate dinner then I doddered upstairs to the studioffice. I looked at a few blogs for ideas thinking maybe I could craft myself a little happy. While the boy created Lego masterpieces I stumbled through making some cards. I had tried to craft a bit the night before but the unidentified gloom was too strong and the mojo was just not working. Saturday = STAGNATION.

After the boy went to bed Sunday I began to hit my stride. I was beginning to like what I was making. I cased a card by Savitri Wilder whose work I love. Great INSPIRATION. To the left is my version of the card she posted Saturday. Then I started making cards of my own design and really got into it. I’ll post those later.

It was super late when I finally decided I should go to bed. I thought I’d check my email before I turned the computer off for the night. JUBILATION! I won! Out of 273 comments on last Sunday’s Mod Podge Rocks post “Art Glitter Halloween birdhouses and a giveaway.” They picked my name. I’ve never won anything before, well I won a cake in a cakewalk in second grade but that’s a different story.

I woke up Labor Day morning a feeling a little bit better. After all I had won. I was also excited to go to Chicago for a friend’s barbeque. I checked the time it was to begin. Made a cute little gift, perfect for near the guest book that he always has at parties. Then hightailed it into the city. When I got to his house the first thing I noticed was the absence of noise. The party was to begin at 3 and we were there at 3:05. There should be some sound. We rang the bell. He came to the door and informed us that the party was yesterday. What HUMILIATION.

We walked a couple blocks to another friend’s place. We were told she and another friend would be at the beach, well the yard of my old building. Yes I used to live on the shore of Lake Michigan. We got there in time to help her carry items out to the yard for a BBQ with other tenants of the building I used to call home.

I felt very uneasy about being there. I’ve never crashed a party before and I didn’t know most of these people, things change in 5 years. Once another friend, who doesn’t live there, arrived and I was handed a glass of Sangria I felt much better about the situation. We kept to ourselves, my other friend and I but we enjoyed the food they had all brought to share. I love gatherings of mainly adults because the food is so much better than I’m used to. I had tabouli and chicken kebobs. It was glorious MASTICATION.

Tabbouleh by jakub_hla, on Flickr

After we ate we saw a figure on the beach that reminded us both of a friend whose life we celebrated and whose death we mourned about a year ago in that same yard. RUMINATIONS about life and death, the past and the uncertainty of my future were like an invitation to the gloom.

Just as we were preparing to leave I was reintroduced to the woman who bought my old condo. She invited us in to see all the “improvements” she had made over the past 5 years. I barely recognized the place and some of the sadness I always feel when returning to the old neighborhood left. I will never long to be in that place again because it will never be the same again.

I drove home from the city and saw the boy off to bed then returned to the computer to check emails and look at a couple of blogs. Today’s post from Melody Ross on the Brave Girls Club Blog made me cry. She writes in a way that makes you feel she is writing directly to you, and today I needed to hear everything she said so if you have time go check it out. So worth reading. Her words were a great CONSOLATION.

Tomorrow I will live on purpose, facing forward, armed with INFORMATION gathered this weekend. I will use whatever MOTIVATION I can find to shake the gloom and get stuff done, perhaps an INVOCATION.

If you are still with me here, what DEDICATION. Thank you.

Happy crafting



Lynn Stevens said...

oh Katie,
It sounds to me your going through a rough bout of depression! Its hard to lose your job, the routine that you become used to is gone. The fear of the unknown adds to it all.
I have sufferd from manic depression my entire life. I know the black hole you are in.
Its so hard to crawl out of but you have to try and get out. Maybe a walk or a bikeride, just get out there, you never know who you will meet! the next stranger might just be the connection for a new job or a new friend!
Except the kindness of your friends after all wouldn't you buy your friend lunch too? not out of sorrow but out of friendship.
know that your in my prayers and I hope you find your purpose again, enjoy your time off, do some crafting and maybe try and sell some on ebay or Etsy, It may give you some extra $ you need right now.
big HUGS to you!!! You are special!

Renée said...

wow, that's tons of "ations" :) I hope you begin to feel better soon ... and that life turns around for you!

Beautiful card, Katie! Love the colours and design!

Janet O. said...

Jeez, I'm sorry you're having such a rough time Katie. I'll keep you and Evan in my prayers -- things happen for a reason and eventually the reason will show itself.

In the meantime, you might be amused to know I still have the pushmi-pullyou and it is, of course, a WRECK. And I can't even remember when it used to talk -- that part's been broken as long as I can remember. I was so excited to see that picture of a new one! But cripes, $300? Wow.

Hang in there. There are a few positives to your situation; namely that you get so much time with Evan. A year from now, you'll look back on this and that's the part you'll love.