Saturday, January 4, 2014

The Job Hunt, Depression and Bipolar

I'm depressed. It took me a bit to realize it. It's situational depression and I understand that. I need a job. I need to be able to support my family. I want to work, but I don't want to do it anymore.

I want to work to keep a roof over my family's head. I want to be able to enjoy things and do things again. But, I'm tired. My other half is bipolar. So, even though I have worked and worked and actually made a decent salary, the last two years of me working I didn't see the money. Bills were always behind, rent was behind, and the checking account was overdrawn so often that I stopped even looking at it. I was working, but for nothing. Well, I was working for something, to pay back the bank for all the bounces.

I am not a check bouncer. I am fanatic, but Tony, it didn't always click to. He'd think the money was there, or that we needed this or that, and the money would be gone. Then, electric would need paid, or something was needed and the card would be at it again, only this time bouncing. My bank card seemed to be made of rubber. If there was $100 in the account, it wouldn't occur to Tony that we needed to save that for the next few days until the paycheck hit. He would spend it. It became a never ending cycle. Then I was laid off. Somehow being laid off was a bit of a relief. I don't have to do it anymore. I'm not the one it all depends on. He was able to find a job to start in a few days, and I could be the one at home. I could get the house clean and organized. I could spend time with the kids that I never had been able to.

I was scared and nervous, but I was up to the challenge. Tony started work and he was happy again. He was able to do what he loved doing so much. He was Chef Tony again. I'd stay up every night until he got home from work to put his one chef jacket in the laundry. I'd wake up every morning before the kids had to be up for school and put his jacket in the dryer so it would be clean and ready for him to leave by 10:30 AM. I would spend time with him until he left for work. He didn't like me running around the house cleaning when he was home. He liked me to hang out and spend time with him. Just the two of us. Then, I'd get to work. I'd clean and sort and organize. I'd spend time with our little girl.

Then, it started. Tony's manager was fired and replaced with someone new. Tony started coming home upset. The new manager was a front of house guy and didn't understand how a kitchen worked. The new manager wanted to use powdered chicken stock that contained MSG in the vegetable soup. The new manager grabbed his butt (Tony used different language). All of this was happening at the same time as he never got paid on time. Every paycheck was at least a week late. One paycheck was $500 short.

Tony got fired. The Sunday after Thanksgiving his brakes went out on the van. He called and told them he would be late. In exchange he was fired.

We had finally been getting on track. I had cashed out my 401K to pay the back rent. I didn't have much, but it was enough to bring us to only owing the current month. My savings were all gone. My 401K was all I had left and now it was gone too. It then took nearly a month for him to get paid for his last two weeks.

I was able to do some gardening for the retired teacher across the street. Two weeks before Christmas I was paid just enough to finish paying off December's rent. I was thrilled. Utilities were paid, rent was paid, and thanks to the generosity of others and my mini endeavours, we had gift cards to buy Christmas gifts for the kids.

As soon as Tony was fired in the end of November, I had started applying for jobs. I admit it, I wasn't very proactive. I didn't apply for as many as I should have, but I was putting in an effort. I hoped that Tony would find something. I didn't want to give up being a stay at home mom. I wasn't good at it yet, but I was getting better.

We have just enough money to pay January rent, and we will be doing that as soon as the moneys clear the bank. What are we going to do for utilities, I am not sure. We should have just enough to make it through the month. After that, I don't know what will happen.

So, I am depressed. I need a job, and I want to work, but I don't want it to be for nothing. I hate bipolar. I hate the fact that it means that I feel exhausted from the mood swings and overspending. I hate the fact that it means that I feel the success or downfall of our family falls on my shoulders. I'm not bipolar but I suffer the consequences of loving someone with bipolar and wanting to keep our family together and intact.   

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