Do You Remember ?

It’s the 21st night of September. My son and I were laughingly deliberating where Earth, Wind and Fire got that idea from. What’s with the 21st night of September in the 70s?

Back about a year ago, I didn’t have a job. A lot of firsts happened in my life after that. Well, first – was not having a job for the first time in my life since I started working. My savings that I have accumulated for almost 20 years was getting used for rent, food, car payments etc. Eventually, it got exhausted. Like I was broke. I was relying on my daughter’s salary and the mercy of my sister to get by. For the first time, I went to a community center and applied for “food stamps”…. it wasn’t necessarily a food stamp but it’s similar. The case manager gave me a calendar which had marks that correspond to schedules of when there’s free fresh veggies, pantry and food drive. It was the 17th of December when I finally got our first few bags of groceries, fruits, veggies and I even got to choose which gift I wanted from the displayed items. I have never been so touched. I went home with a new set of cookware, canned food, cake mix, bag of flour and sugar… and more.

When I lost my car from getting repossessed, I met an old man who offered to pay for a small car so I can drive out to my job applications. That old man wanted me to be his girlfriend, I know, that’s why he helped. I never felt anything and my mind was off to a lot of concerns for my family to even consider being in a relationship – despite knowing it may help me financially in the meantime, I didn’t want him to be that person in my life.

So I got very depressed. I went for very long walks and pretended on Facebook that I was fine. Well, I was – at the moment- but my head was tormented by thoughts of a future of homelessness. I don’t even remember how I was able to pay my phone and electric bills. I know that half of the time during the time that I was jobless, I was relying on my savings. After that, I believe it was just mainly helping my sister and my daughter. I went to social media every day but I did not give any ideas about my financial and home situation. There were a few people in my life besides my family knew about it but only a few.

We all know that I finally landed a job over a year after I left my last job. I also mentioned hear the wonderful news that my family and I were able to find a new place to stay in a new home. Living here for almost 3 months, all I’ve done was work, be home, run errands, and just stay home. My daughter from time to time spends night here with her boyfriend. Other than that she stays with her best friend’s family. So it’s just been me and my son. My dog, cats and the other living creatures that are around this neighborhood and I have been tending to.

In my past posts, I have whined about my bosses and may have complained here and there about the little things. Despite those, I was driving today from work and I was stuck in traffic. I made a reflection in my head about how far and how tough I had to go in order to be where I am now. I don’t spend much money eating out just like I used to do with my friends and family. I don’t buy new clothes or new shoes unless they’re for work.

Today is the first day of fall and it is definitely cold again. My wind chime keeps chiming often times during the night as well. All through this time, I have not gone hungry nor any of my family including my animals. Living away from my previous city, I haven’t had a chance to go back for free food and free groceries. Somehow, my family and I have been able to afford basic commodities and that has been really good. I also have been able to afford food for my animals and even get to feed my foster kittens with their mom outdoors. Yesterday, I received quite a hefty tip from a lady who ordered lunch for her coworkers. I decided to go to the thrift shop and get me and my son new throw blankets for the coming cold nights. The blankets came with matching throw pillows and it almost feels cashmere-like.

Living with my son, I am thankful for. The other night, I woke up and told my sister through text telling her that I dreamt that my ex-husband was trying to steal away my little baby just like what he did when one of my children were still young. In my dream, I felt the same fear that I felt over 20 years ago. When my son was about 10 months old, my crazy ex-husband grabbed him and left him in the middle of the street so that he could be run over. According to him, the baby was not his. Having learned about this absolutely tore me apart back then. There are plenty of things that haunt me up to this day that my ex-husband did. My life back then was difficult and miserable. It was worse than the feeling that I had I almost thought I was going to lose my home and that we were going to be hungry and homeless. After everything that my ex-husband did to me and to my children, I knew that there couldn’t be anything worse.

It has been over 15 years since me and my children have seen their father. Despite that, I still have nightmares and fears and this anxious feeling whenever I sense that someone is going to have a fight even if it did not involve me. I wish I didn’t have these nightmares anymore. After taking Seroquel for the first time, I had the biggest hopes that it had been cured. I thought that I would never dream about my ex-husband again.

Being in my age, the peace and ability to sustain myself and my children is enough for me. The thought that there are people around us, that genuinely care, fills me with content. Back in the day maybe 8 to 10 years ago, I was driving my dream car, living in a resort style apartment, going out almost every week with my coworkers, shop every after work, and eating out with my family might have seemed to be a sign that I have been successful. I was still feeling incomplete back then. I still felt like I had the biggest problem in the world. Money was still not enough and I was earning 6-digits annually.

Now, I sit in my little balcony with the wind in my face and the wind chime softly clanging in front of me, I breathe in and feel contented. I didn’t go to a cruise or flew on many trips to different tourist destinations. I am under a roof and my family is too. We don’t starve and my cupboards are filled with food (humans and animals alike). My fridge never runs out of milk and eggs. I’m always able to afford a loaf of bread.

We are safe. No one is attempting to take my children away not hurt them. My job doesn’t pay even half my previous salary but I love what I do and my main boss has been the best I have ever had.

I believe that I am exactly where I am supposed to be and I’m glad.


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