Yep, you read that right: Unemployed and under foreclosure. It's been a wild ride this past year, trust me. I realized today that four years ago, I retired from the Navy two weeks from today. Since that day, I have held amazing jobs: I was an executive assistant to a Presidential appointee; I was the Lead Special Events Coordinator for the Pentagon; I was a curriculum developer for the FBI. All amazing. I was never more than 24 hours without a job. I only looked for the first one, the rest of them found me.
That was then, this is now.
In May, my fabulous company had to lay me off. It was with tears on both sides that I left, but there was nothing either of us could do. A day later, I was offered a position with another company. More money, working from home (supposedly), a dream job. I was very excited to take the job! My boss was actually 200 miles away, we only spoke by phone. When she came to the office for a face to face, I knew the job was short lived. We were both too strong to work together. Things happened and six weeks later, my contract was terminated.
I completely stressed out. Already under threat of foreclosure, the end now seemed inevitable. It was over. All was lost. It was all gone. I put my house on market and lost my mind for two weeks. This is *me* for God's sake! The woman who ran flight decks for eight different squadrons. The woman who could do anything!! "You are the strongest woman I've ever known" was the resounding theme on my Facebook.
But to me? I was a loser. I had lost everything. I tied Mac to a post and blocked his ears. I railed against him. I railed against God. "Why me?" I sobbed. "I've tried so hard! I've prayed to you! I've done everything I know how to do! Why is it that everyone that has ever hurt me gets happy and I lose?" I screamed at Mac. I screamed at God. I cried. I sobbed. I went into total self-pity mode. I knew all my frenemies were happy at my loss, all my enemies squealed with glee and my friends? My friends stood strong but helpless.
Then the bottom fell out. I lost my faith. The irony is, I was with my ex mother-in-law and heard a wonderful sermon that was really written for me. I came out of the church renewed with faith. Then I came back to Maryland and my faith faltered. I took it out on Mac, who felt I was mocking his faith. I wasn't mocking it, I was trying to understand it. How do you turn it over? How do you just "believe" when it seems everything you worked so hard for is ripped away? What's the lesson?
Then today happened. My friend has an insulation business. Last week, he offered me part time work, $12 an hour. Hey, it's work, right?
Here I am, a woman that made $123k a year on her own, just to lose everything. As I was sweeping down insulation, vacuuming it up, bagging it, pulling 100's of feet of hose through luxury apartments that are under construction, the only woman on a construction site of 100 men, it hit. Mac is right. My "things" don't matter. I bought this house as a "start over". We see how well that worked. I now get to work with my oldest everyday, learning new things about him. We talk, we laugh, we spend time for the first time. I was gone most of his life. Now we drive together, work together, relate to each other. It has renewed us. It also worked out as a full-time job for him (ah, to be young).
When I got laid off, my older boys said, "Mom, it's time you run away to home. Pack your shit and move to South Carolina. It's the only place we've ever seen you truly happy--aside from your jets, that is." For 22 years, my dream has been move to Savannah or the Low Country. God has now provided me the opportunity.
So, I am faced with selling my house for nearly $100K less than I paid. My bank account is screaming and I still worry about tomorrow. But it's only tomorrow I worry about now. Mac told me, "You are looking too far ahead. You need to worry about today, not six months from now. Today.." Well, I've taken that down to tomorrow. Feels like progress to me!!
Bottom line is, I am a blue-collar chick that was burned out in the white collar world. I enjoy working with men in a physical environment everyday again. I enjoy the "no competition" attitude. Just get it done so we can go home!!
Middle's Godfather said to me, "You know how proud I am of you? You lose your job and you go out and do 'grunt work' instead of pissing and moaning about. You are the strongest woman I've ever known."
Mac said, "You, my love, are not a loser. You are so very strong, so very smart, so very giving. This is just something that happened. I know you, you'll succeed. You live somewhere that you constantly pour yourself out and you never get refilled. Your soul is dying there." (That's actually a conglomeration of everything he's said the past year.)
So, everything *does* happen for a reason. I don't *need* a house on the water, I don't need a four hour commute everyday. I don't need to make over $100K a year just to struggle.
I need my faith, I need my sons, I need the Low Country. I need to be in the one place where my soul is refilled when I pour myself out. Where my faith is strong in God, where even strangers are friends, where everyone feels like family.
So, I have my personal trainer exam on the 16th, I have an interview to be an online fitness coach tomorrow, and I have more work on the construction site on Thursday.
Life is good...
I'll leave you with this: