‘My 2012 resolution is simple: survival’
I have been unemployed for almost 15 months. My last position was as an assistant manager for the US Census. Before that position, I was unemployed for almost 11 months. In total, I have been unemployed for 26 of the last 46 months.
Even with putting in thousands of applications, I have only received three interviews. I am not one of those people who, “sleeps later” and is comfortable with being out of work. I am embarrassed by having to live off of others and would do any type of work if it meant providing for my family. I wish that Christmas would not come this year. Even with cutting everything back to the bare minimums, we still have barely enough for food and utilities.
In addition, my mortgage company informed me that they were not going to extend my unemployment modification (I guess they expect everyone to have gainful employment within a six month period). This took up an additional one-third of our monthly funds but it was the only way we could keep the house. My Christmas is going to be filled with worry about whether or not we will be homeless in the next couple of months.
I watch the commercials of happy families sitting around, reveling in their presents and think, “A few years ago, that was us.” Now we have been reduced to shreds of hope and waiting for the knock at the door that will tell us how much longer we will have shelter. Everyday, I job search and volunteer at a museum and put on a brave face so the little ones will not feel the pain and stress that I am feeling.
Growing up, I always watched the Christmas shows that say how Christmas is the season for miracles—the reality is that it is not. I know that this will probably not get printed in lieu of other, more positive responses but this is my reality, and my Christmas. My 2012 resolution is simple: survival.
Shawn V.; Rockford, IL