Yesterday was probably one of the worst and strangest days of my life.
At about 3 PM I heard the kitchen door open and called out “What are you doing back inside so quick?”
You see, the girls had just went out back to start sledding and I assumed that they were coming back in. But instead of the girls, I turned around and saw my husband standing in the kitchen with tears in his eyes telling me that he had just lost his job.
You would think that I might fall apart and cry, right? But somehow…somehow I was able to remain very calm. I hugged my husband and I sat down and prayed and then I got on the internet and signed him up for unemployment. Then I made some phone calls and found out about different assistance programs. You know…food stamps, energy assistance, healthcare, etc. That was a very humbling experience.
Then we looked online at the classifieds for jobs. Jobs for me, jobs for him. But as you all know, there are no jobs out there right now. About the only thing I did see a lot of were jobs for truck drivers. And if it comes down to it, he’ll go out and get a CDL and be a truck driver.
Through all of that, I remained calm. I believed, and still do, that the Lord will take care of us. One way or the other – I know that we will be fine. I didn’t once cry. Not until it was time for me to call Hannah’s pre-school and tell them that she was not going to be able to attend anymore. The pre-school is $75 a month and there is no way we can pay that. That’s when I cried. And it turned out to be for nothing because I soon found out that the pre-school has financial assistance, so it looks like she will be able to keep going.
Here’s what we know right now.
– Brian has 2 weeks of severance pay, plus one more week’s salary coming to him. After that time, he should receive unemployment benefits. However, the maximum unemployment benefit is less than half of what he was making before and we don’t know if he will even receive the maximum.
– At the end of February we will have no health insurance. Indiana has an insurance program for low-income families, so I’ll be checking into that on Monday.
– We will be getting rid of all unneccessary expenses (sattelite, cell phone or home phone, maybe internet-we’re thinking about keeping that so we can check the classifieds online and email resumes). We won’t be going ANYWHERE unless it is an absolute necessity.
– On Monday, I will be applying for food stamps and energy assistance for help with our utilities.
At the end of three weeks time, we will be faced with making major decisions. Like letting either our house or car or both get repossessed. Last night we figured up all of our expenses and added in the max on the unemployment benefit and there is no way we can make it. Not even with the max benefit and not even with getting rid of the extra expenses.
I know that we can live with relatives if need be. I’m not worried about being homeless. And we do have one vehicle that is paid for, that we won’t have to worry about making a payment on if we lose the other one. And of course, we will try to sell my car before we let it go back, but I don’t think people are really spending that kind of money right now. I don’t have high hopes for selling the car.
But still, I am trying to be positive because in my heart I do know that the Lord will provide for us. It may not be in the way that we want or the way that we are used to, but He will provide. I’m also trying to be positive for my husband because right now he is feeling very much the failure even though this isn’t his fault. I can see it on his face every time I look at him. And he doesn’t share my positive view right now.
My cousin, Gretchen, emailed me this verse this morning: John 16:33 “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world, you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”
Well, that was just what I needed this morning and I plan to post it right on the fridge. I know that others are in our situation or are fearful that they might soon be in our situation. It is a scary time for everyone right now. I’m praying for you. I’m praying for us. I’m praying for our nation.
I’ll try to pop in here every so often with updates. Thank you all for your words of concern and encouragement and for your prayers.