Monday, May 27, 2013

The Situation (Day 78)

Happy Memorial Day!

I think my numbering got off-by-one a while back so I've gone through and adjusted the day numbers on some of these posts, assuming that day 1 was the Monday of my first full week of unemployment -- in other words, the first missed work day.

Yesterday my friend Bill visited us at our home here in Saginaw with his wife and their young child. I haven't seen Bill since... hmmm, I think it's been 4 years, since the last college reunion I attended? And then before that, it was much longer. He brought us some pies from Fuzzy's Diner, and we fed everyone baked beans we made from some of the pinto bean stash in our root cellar, flavored with maple and bacon and cooked overnight in a cast-iron dutch oven at 200 degrees. They were delicious. While our kids and his kid and some neighborhood kids ran around and got filthy, the best way to spend a sunny spring day, the grownups also got filthy -- we got through a bunch of garden work, which was very satisfying. Bill and I got to spend a little while playing music together -- he's a very talented guy. That was great. It was a little reminder that even in the midst of the stress and angst of The Situation, with stress over trying to find work, keeping our mortgage paid, collect benefits, and figure out what to do next, it is still late spring and the world is alive and beautiful and we are meant to be alive and enjoy it.

The Michigan unemployment office waits for no man (or woman), and MARVIN does not count holidays, so I certified online today. There is good news there. The online system says I will be paid for the previous two weeks. That will mean I've collected eight weeks of unemployment compensation out of the 20 I'm eligible for. No word, yet, on whether I will be paid anytime soon for the 3 calendar weeks that were withheld. If I'm never paid for those weeks, I think that it means I still have them in reserve, and could still collect them as calendar weeks 21-23 -- that would be the last week of July and the first couple of weeks of August.

Let's hope it doesn't come to that. If I'm not employed by then, though, we will be very low on cash, for things like water and electric bills and gasoline. Getting paid now for those missed weeks would really help with that.

Not getting paid now for them now could also mean that I could collect them later in the benefit year, if, G-d forbid, I wind up hired and laid off again. Let's hope that is really, really not necessary!

Please keep our family in your thoughts this week, as I have an interview tentatively scheduled for Thursday, and several employers I'm waiting to hear back from. I'll be off-line, devoting the rest of today to celebrating and remembering our lost loved ones.

2 comments:

Matt Walton said...

Good luck with the interview, and other opportunities. I'm still astonished that you can be laid off with no notice like that, and also that you're forging ahead and taking action even though it's frustrating and terrifying to suddenly be in this situation. I think I'd just be weeping on the floor, but maybe when you've got a wife and kids to support you end up with a more productive attitude.

Paul Potts said...

Thanks, Matt!

I try not to do too much weeping on the floor. Going to the gym regularly has been a big help. It doesn't take away the stressors, but there's nothing like pummeling your muscles to keep your mood up. It helps me feel a little better about myself when I look in the mirror, too.