Thursday, August 13, 2009

Strangers Sent to Lead Me

Every day at work I seem to be interacting with people who are meant to come to my cashiering station. Last week I met and spoke at length with two women my age. One had sold her home in California and moved to my town. She and her husband are both out of work as a writer and art director/event planner, respectively. The proceeds from the sale of their home are depleting rapidly and they fear there will not be enough for a down payment on a home when they become reemployed. This woman came to my register and explained that the curtains she was purchasing were because she had to do something to spruce up the rental home they are now living in. She was apologetic for living in a rental. As we talked and I shared my circumstances, she acknowledged that there is no need for her to even mention that she lives in a rental home. Who cares, anyway?

The second woman I met last week is in foreclosure and has decided to "walk" away from her situation and just hand over the keys. She is boldly moving to North Carolina where she knows no one. Her youngest of four children is going to be a Junior in college and she feels as though she held on as best she could. She is also out of real work and doing some sort of work for a woman (house sitting I think). The income she is getting is being hidden so it could be that she may be considering bankruptcy as well.

Today, I spoke with a woman my age moving into an apartment with her two kids (she has 3 ages 20, 15 and 12) after a divorce.

All of these women inspired me to face my situation with grace and dignity. I am not the only one facing change due to loss and hardship. Others are out there and adapting as best they can. As will I. The circumstances I am in can seem very isolating. Working again and interacting with many different people has brought others into my line of vision I never would have encountered. I feel as though these are not chance encounters but meetings meant to occur to help show me the way.

I also ran up a woman my age who is a certified nursing assistant and attended our community college. It was good to talk to her and I asked her a host of questions. My desire would be to work in a nursing home/long term care facility. She verified that it would only take me two months to complete the program and obtain a job at a pay rate of $13.00 hourly. I have decided to seriously consider this program in January if I am unable to secure a satisfactory counseling or social services job.

Lastly, my final customer was a nice middle-aged guy who spent extra time talking with me and I saw him look at my name tag to read my name. It was flattering to have his attention and know that he had made a point to see my name.

Today I am grateful:

1. For having a job, such as it is to go to.
2. For the feelings of productivity I gain from my job, such as it is.
3. For the experience this job has given me.
4. For how this job has gotten me back into the world, after a few years of being out of it when I was only taking care of my folks and not working.
5. For all of the people who touch my life, even briefly when they share their stories and experiences with me as I am waiting on them at work.

I have:

1. Tons of books (too many).
2. A running, reliable vehicle (although I do seem to get a lot of flat tires).
3. A soft bed to sleep on.
4. Enough food in my stomach.
5. A house full of things I can donate to others who can use them and even downsizing, I'll have more than enough "stuff."


  1. coming up for air for a brief moment and read your blog. you are blessed to have people drifting through your life that inspire. seeing this for what it is and hanging onto hope is what will get you through. sometimes hope and the will to go on is all we have. sometimes it has to be enough. you have a lot to be grateful for and the things you listed that you have, much better than some will have tonight.

    i'm smiling for you.

  2. So many people touch our lives, even if only for a brief moment. It's so easy to dismiss these moments as unimportant, but they do add up over time and all help to make life more worthwhile. It's good that you have the space inside your head to recognise them, and that in itself is such a positive thing.