Recently, my husband and I moved cross-country for his job. We left my career behind.  Since I work in healthcare, we figured it would not be difficult for  me to find a new place of employment. We were wrong.

I have 8 years of education, good references and experience.  Still no job.  During my period of unemployment I have discovered:

1).  How wasteful I used to be.  I shopped for convenience when I was working.  Now I think about everything I purchase.  Do I need it?  Am I getting the most for my money?  I used to spend a lot of my former income on convenience and frivolous items.  (for example, I used to buy 20 oz soda’s every day I worked.  In fact, I usually bought two since I worked 13 hours at a time).

2)  How naive I was.  I rarely thought about the economy and the effect it has had on people’s lives when I was employed.

3)  The value of volunteering.  The other day I helped tutor inner-city children at an after school program.  Giving my time to those less fortunate is truly humbling.

4)  How emotionally draining unemployment is.  I constantly wonder, “Why aren’t the recruiters calling me?”  “Did they even get my application?”  “What if they think I don’t have enough education?!!?”  “Why did I spend all that time/money/effort on those degrees if I can’t even use them?” “Why did we move away from my last career?”  I also cringe when meeting new people and am asked, “So, what do you do?”  I constantly feel as though I have to justify myself.

Recently, I’ve been reading The Nouveau Poor, a blog about a family struggling in the new economy.  The author’s posts challenge my views regarding food stamps, welfare  and unemployment. Read it. It’s eye-opening.


6 Comments on “Unemployment”

  1. Sorry to hear about your unemployment. The same goes for me. I had 15 plus successful years as restaurant manager, I left it behind to broaden my background with an MBA and now I can’t find job either. it is frustrating! This writing has helped me feel not completely worthless.

    Kudos to your volunteering. Join LinkedIn.com to find your niche in your new location. And ENJOY all the time you have this year preparing for Christmas! Remember other years when we all said, “I just need more time!” I hope your husband’s job is going good!


  2. Thanks for the kind comments. I find our new financial circumstances challenge my own views about poverty and welfare every day. It’s an interesting position to be in. I’m meeting people I probably never would have known and hearing stories that make me realize the world isn’t as black and white as I once thought. I like what you said about volunteering. It helps put things in perspective and is a great way to keep skills sharp while not working. Here’s hoping we all find gainful employment in the new year!

  3. Red says:

    Perspective is the only way to navigate a drastic change in circumstances. When I retired, the hardest part for me was not wanting to spend money at all. My late husband thought I had lost my mind. I would fuss at him for spending $3, but would spend $300 without batting an eyelash. He did not understand the difference between investing in something which would last and buying cheaply.

    Hang in there. You will make it!

  4. […] recently shared my unemployment frustrations.   I’m happy to share that I was recently offered a full-time job and I accepted!  This […]

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