So as I’m sure we’re ALL aware, I am chronically missing work lately, due to one crisis or another. I swear I’ll get my act together and then I don’t, and I hate myself some more for going to pieces over something, and swear I’ll stop, and then I don’t, and the cycle repeats itself. Now my FMLA paperwork keeps having to be redone if I go over the thee days my doctor estimates I’ll take in a month (January had a whopping EIGHT, that month SUCKED) and I’ve already taken two of my three for this month. Part of this joy, though, is that they added the caveat that I needed a doctor’s note to come back to work. From a psychiatrist. I don’t know about anyone else’s psychiatrist, but mine and every one I’ve ever worked with professionally are booked months out in advance. You can’t just pop in and expect to get seen, though I have camped out in her lobby hoping someone cancels a time or two.
I called on a Monday and couldn’t get in until Wednesday at 4:00, so I had to be off three days after the breakup, before I could return to work. Then the note I brought wasn’t sufficient, and now there’s a form she has to fill out that covers all absences for thirty days, and after that, she has to fill out a new one. I had to get that one filled out THIS week but she wasn’t in on Monday so I had to be off Tuesday as well so she could complete it for me, and I still called Wednesday morning to make sure it had been submitted because I was not driving half an hour away (or even putting on clothes, honestly) until I knew it wasn’t futile. So now my doctor has to fill out the return to work form probably monthly, and the FMLA form possibly monthly as well if I don’t get my act together.
No pressure, of course.
And all this stupid time off (five days this pay period because of that nonsense! FIVE!) has made me a nervous wreck because I don’t have enough money to pay the bills. Like, I’m scraping together coins from the couch cushions, floating bills, and calling my mom, not enough money. I’m choosing between bills, food, and gas, and therefore I’m not buying much food right now. I had decent stores built up so I’m not *completely* out of food, but I won’t lie when I say I am sick of spaghetti. My cabinets are very depressed right now. I’ve just sort of… stopped eating, and the kitchen just makes me sad, because I’m out of the building blocks for different food- eggs, butter, milk- so I keep having to make the same things, the cheap things, and it’s like being in second grade living on Hamburger Helper for months again. *gag* There’s a reason I can’t touch Hamburger Helper without gagging, and I literally cannot eat it- we lived on that shit for MONTHS. We had no stove and no refrigerator at that point, so we kept milk in half-gallon increments out in a snowbank (thank god it was winter) and ate cereal, sandwiches, and things that could be cooked in a skillet. Mom had to buy the hamburger for the Hamburger Helper nightly, because we had no way to reliably keep it safe temperatures. The day we finally got a stove and fridge, mom baked chocolate chip cookies in celebration. My brother and I- kindergarten and second grade, respectively- sat and watched the entire baking process in awe. That’s twelve minutes baking time. We ate something that wasn’t Hamburger Helper, and that stupid glove has not graced my mother’s pantry since.
I can’t do it. I’ll live on ramen first.
…No, I’ll stick with spaghetti. At least I won’t die of malnutrition.
So I’ve been trying hard to make new things for my shop, and have been pretty successful, which is exciting. Mom gave me some money so I could cover the rent and gas, and once the money from my sales makes it to my bank (Paypal and the bank like to screw around with it for a few days in the interim) I knew I could go grocery shopping, and get a few staple items to make it to my next insufficient paycheck, in the hopes that the check after THAT will allow me to go get $200 in groceries to stock the pantry back up. I’ve been pushing my shop in Facebook and other places, hoping people will see something they like and buy it. I’m Facebook friends with a handful of coworkers, so I’m sure they’ve seen my comments, and a few have asked about various items or if I could make something in particular.
When I got in from driving around trying to find something to do (I failed; I was trying to bring in clients to do paperwork and couldn’t convince any of the folks I talked to that they really wanted to go in and finish it. I was really, really bored today.) I sat down at my computer to document my conversations with clients in the field, and inside my laptop was a red envelope, like a card would come in. I figured it was a Valentine and opened it. There was no note inside, no writing at all; just three $20 bills.
Someone anonymously left me $60, you guys. I definitely cried. I think I know who it was but if they did it anonymously, clearly they want it left anonymous, so I didn’t pry very hard (though I did go give the person I think it was a big hug, because she’s been hugely supportive since the breakup by checking on me and making sure I get through the weekends and rough days ok, so I thanked her for being an awesome friend.) I just posted a thank-you on Facebook for my anonymous benefactor, as well as on here. I was able to pay my phone bill and get groceries, when I thought I’d have to choose between them.
All I can do, really, is say thank you, and try to pay it forward. That’s what my anonymous Christmas gift said, too. Pay it Forward. And I will, I promise. I will continue to pay it forward as often as I can. Thank you to everyone who believes in me and supports me, either by keeping me in your thoughts and prayers, buying something in my shop, or being an anonymous benefactor. I wouldn’t be where I am without you all. ❤