I happened to find myself driving past the Norton Simon Museum. I impulsively parked at the curb, hopped out of my car, walked across the grass and stopped right in front of that humongous sculpture of “The Thinker”. Who wouldn’t pull over for a closer look of “The Thinker”? I stood there admiring him. He was looking magnificent in the sunshine on a perfect summer day with the bright blue sky as I stood in the shade of a tree. After a moment, I became the thinker as well. And this is not necessarily a good thing. I started to think about many things, mostly, if I would receive my extended unemployment benefits or not. Yes, I qualify, but I do not know for sure if I am all dialed in with the system to receive this extension. I had unsuccessfully tried to get a direct answer through the EDD. The recording said, “if I qualify, I will automatically receive my next benefit check”. Is it so wrong for me to need to hear my personal confirmation from a real person? I’m unemployed – a little reassurance please. It’s quite challenging not to think about my unemployment. And like many people during this time in the economy, I am preoccupied a lot. Plus, I am not sleeping well – again. For a week now, insomnia is trying to visit me. To talk about it seems to make it grow bigger in my mind and then I can’t stop thinking about it which could make the cycle begin again. So, I’ve tried not to talk about it. I try not to think about it.
As I look for a job. I am intensely compelled to keep writing on both my book and my blog. I didn’t realize my last post had many typos on it. The typos and a couple of paragraphs are fixed now, but I could not stop thinking about my typos. I am so hard on myself when I am unemployed AND don’t have a good nights rest. I mean, what could possibly be so difficult about sleeping! Only everything these days.
It is frustrating for all of us unemployed people out there who have so much to offer, so much to say. We all want to carry our own weight, be a part of the community and suit up and show up. We are every where, us unemployed. I am an able bodied person, just a little sleepy is all. Don’t tell me you don’t want to hire me because I seem to be “over qualified”, let me be the one to decide that. I want to work. I want to be there. I refuse to get discouraged. I know better days are so close for all of us. I look forward to the day when I too can find a job. I look forward to all of it – I look forward to dreading that it’s Monday, running late in the morning and getting all the red lights, being frustrated with my boss and listening to company gossip. I would be honored to have the ups and downs of a good job. Who knows, maybe I am about to find the best job I’ve ever had in my life! I will remain hopeful no matter how little sleep I get. So, until then, be gentle with us unemployed. We accept encouragement freely.
I looked at “The Thinker” in a new light and I made a decision to allow “The Thinker” do my thinking about unemployment for me. Anyway, he looks like he is pretty good at it. So I said good bye to my pinch-thinker, hopped back in my car, and drove off.