Lost Momentum

It’s not surprising, I suppose, that what I hoped would be a brilliant trajectory (up, up and away) from our old living on the edge situation, into a new life full of opportunity, has pretty much fizzled. I suspected it would when we weren’t able to sell our old trailer as fast, or for nearly as much money, as we needed.  Add in our sputtering, limping journey east with its setbacks and extra expenses and it was pretty obvious that our rocket wasn’t going to make it.  At this point that dream resembles a deflated balloon.

Since we arrived severely short of funds it was, and is, imperative that I find a job, both to support my family and to save so that we could make progress towards moving to a home of our own.  Unfortunately, and not for lack of trying, my luck in finding employment is no better here than it was in California. I have applied for all sorts of positions from substitute teacher to kitchen help to project manager.  I’ve applied in person and over the internet.  I’ve had two job interviews but no job offers.  It is disheartening and discouraging.

Since we don’t have internet access at home I make a trip to town a couple times a week to check in at the library and check up on the job searches I have set up on various sites such as Monster.com, LinkedIn, Simply Hired and others.  I shoot off cover letters and resumes and fill out applications.  I network with past colleagues and scan the classified ads.  Then I pop into the BioLife Plasma center and donate plasma for $20 a visit.  That at least covers the cost of gas.

On the days I don’t go into town I knit like crazy hoping to have new products to add to my Etsy shop the next time I have internet access.  Knitting offers a creative outlet as well and I’ve branched out from just making cat beds.  Sales are slow but I’m hoping now that fall has arrived more people will want felted hats and gloves or a cozy bed for their kitties!  Christmas isn’t that far away!

The kids have settled in well enough although they still miss their friends in California.  They are doing well in school and participating in drama, choir, book club and other activities.  They are resilient and they trust I will be able to take care of them.  I wish I were as optimistic.  I feel isolated and trapped and spend a lot of time reflecting (especially in the early hours of the morning) whether this was move was the right thing to do.  Reminding myself of just how dire the situation had gotten (how many more months could we hang on before we were sleeping under a bridge somewhere?) doesn’t reassure me.

This entry was posted in Despair, economy, Family, Future, job search, moving, poverty. Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to Lost Momentum

  1. Jeannette says:

    I understand your frustration. Walk a mile and get absolutely no where. I applaud you for trying to make a change. With each small leap sometimes we bump our heads and we have to maybe shift a bit in either direction. You will figure out which direction and hopefuly will look back some day and say remember when.
    It is very hard to live with others that are not your own. Thank fully the children are in school most days and that helps. I hope you haven’t lost faith
    Wishing you some relief
    Jeannette

  2. Merinda says:

    Nothing much to add other then a *hug* and the reminder that we out here in Internet land are hoping and praying for you and your kids.

  3. bogart says:

    I’m sorry it’s so hard. I hope aspects of the more open and rural setting are positive for you and your kids, but I realize it can be very isolating, and of course, the change in seasons as we move from summer into fall probably isn’t helping with that aspect of it.

    I know you felt good about some aspects of the kids schools in comparison to what you had left behind in CA. I hope maybe those make the move worthwhile.

    Please count me among those who hope you’ll apply for and use what aid you are available for — surely SNAP?

  4. Rita says:

    I am at a loss here. I live in Indiana and I thought for sure with support of family and new friends you would be able to find a job. Especially if you attend church the group will over time try to look out for their own and help you with a job. I have often thought I’d work at a Speedway gas station if I really needed work. Not forever but until I could find something else. They seem to always have a Help Wanted sign. Also, Starbucks is well known for it’s benefits. Even if the pay is not great it is a starting place. I’ll keep you in my prayers and did get a little stray kitten recently so I might need one of those cute beds for it for Christmas. Many prayers.

  5. iyouth says:

    Teach on an Indian Reservation. They have housing and save every penny to look for better job opportunites later. Some places are really nice. Sorry that things are not working out.

  6. Lynn says:

    There is no point in questioning your decision. Done is done. Your best source of help is your family and it has to be easier for them with you there. I do agree with “s”–if you have not applied for public assistance, you must. It’s not much, but better than nothing, and Medicaid comes with it, plus a boost on the subsidized housing list (and if you are not on that, apply there, too). You can always say “no thanks” when a place comes along, or return a check if you found a great job and don’t think you need it any more, but being on aid gives you priority for other things.

  7. julia says:

    For awhile, I’ve been wondering if you have any regrets about making the move or if you wish, somehow, you could return to California. Granted you had to come up with rent each month, you always managed to do so. And while I know you were all ready to get out of the trailer, do you have more space and privacy in your current living quarters?

    • boxcarkids says:

      Not really (4 of us are in one already cluttered room) and the loss of autonomy and control over our living space is one of the most difficult things for me. I have always been very independent and self-reliant and it pains me to impose. And this was meant to be short term but there is no end in sight.

  8. s says:

    Maybe I am misremembering but I seem to recall that you did not want to apply for government aid. Please reconsider this if you have not already. It is there for people in your situation and there is NO SHAME in collecting from a system you have paid into for years. Also, the clothing items on your etsy site look great.

    I am very sorry to hear that you’re having a difficult time. Best wishes.

  9. Celeste says:

    Leaving was good. It needed to happen. You couldn’t be sure you could keep your family safe if you’d stayed. Life under a bridge is no place for women or children. You did the right thing to spare them that trauma.

    Right now you have shelter and food. There are new stresses, that’s true. What it will take is a good job, and those are hard to find…especially where you are right now. If you could find one in another place, would you have the option to let the kids stay with family while you got settled? Would you be able to give up the farm idea for now? I’m just thinking out loud here. I do feel for you. I think most people would be crushed emotionally by the experience you’ve had. It’s one thing when it’s just yourself, but you have the kids. That makes it infinitely harder.

    I’m sorry for the hard times.

    • julia says:

      You wouldn’t ever have ended up under a bridge; I’d have driven to CA and hauled you all up to my house before that happened – I mean, if you would have allowed it.

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