So. Thanks to the lovely state of the US economy, I no longer have a job. I was notified on Wednesday (after lunch!), effective immediately. For the second time this year, I was sent packin'. It's funny (but not in a Ha-Ha kind of way). Since I've had a lot of time to think recently, I've come up with a list of similarities and differences between last time and this one. A compare and contrast, if you will....
Just like the first time I got the shaft, Wednesday's dismissal was a total surprise. I didn't even see it coming and I was VERY upset. But, unlike last time, I didn't really do anything to warrant this one, such as blog about every aspect of my job and coworkers. In fact, I'm sure most of you have noticed that I hardly update this thing at all because I adopted a no-blog policy while at work. Truth is, my most-recent former boss couldn't really give me a concrete reason for why they had to let me go. He just kept saying, "It's what we have to do". Right before the holidays. Nice.
So, since I no longer work there, my former company makes software applications for the dialysis industry. I mainly supported the clinical application, but also did a fair amount of QA and spec writing. It was interesting work and I learned new things daily. For the most part, I liked the people and the place in general. I (foolishly) thought that anything having to do with the medical industry would be recession-proof, but clearly I was wrong. As much as I enjoyed what I did, I knew in the back of my head that this just wasn't the right job for me.
Here's the kicker: Had I not screwed up my previous job at the telecommunications company, I'd still be out on the streets, as they've recently had to cut pretty much all of their workforce as well. There were 40+ people there before the cuts. Now, there are 12. Seems I was doomed either way.
Anyways, I'm similarly upset and scared at the prospect of finding a new source of income, but the job options out there are FAR fewer than the last time around. And I can't even start looking until January as I will be spending most of the remaining December days in Wisconsin. I guess that's a good thing though, because I've heard that most companies won't be doing much hiring until after the new year anyways. So, my "vacation" just go a little longer...
Last time I was jobless was during the incredibly hot summer months. Our house is so poorly insulated that it was hotter inside than it was outside. This time around, its colder inside than out. But cold I can deal with. Blankets and sweatshirts and Uggs with fuzzy socks and hot tea combat the chill just fine for me. When it was hot, there was no easy way to cool down. Most days, DJC would come home to find me sweaty, wilted and pissed off.
Gas is a LOT cheaper now than it was during the summer months. A Safeway gas station recently came to our city and currently gas is going for $1.69 a gallon. With the Safeway club card, it's $1.66, and after spending $50 in one grocery shopping trip at Safeway, the gas price drops to $1.59. MUCH nicer than the mid $4 range that we saw over the summer. This means I'm not nearly as concerned with saving my gas for times when I might really need it. I'm not house-bound. I guess that's one of the surprise bonuses of this whole recession thingy.
Right now, I have a ton of time to exercise. My gym teaches morning classes and I've been taking full advantage. Yesterday morning, I took a BodyJam class at 10am and walked out feeling pretty darn good. Exercise is such a good de-stressor. It's nice to have a gym to go to with awesome (and adorable) instructors instead of trying to find the motivation to run on my own.
Financially, I'm feeling less terrified than last time around. I know what I need to do to ensure than I will be able to pay for the necessities and I know just how much I can be frivolous with. The amount I will be getting from Unemployment will help as well. Last night, as I laid in bed listening to the rain, I was thankful for the roof over my head that was keeping me dry and for the sweet, caring, loving man next to me who was keeping me warm. Those are the truly important things in life. Material goods can't warm my heart the way a good hug can.
So, for the next week, I'll be catching up on my daytime TV (wait, did I just see that Rachael Ray has a new dog food line now!? WTF??), exercise, and house cleaning. After the Milwukee extravaganza, I'll be hitting the pavement hard in January. Wish me luck. I have a feeling I'm gonna need it.