This is a day in my life. The life of a single mother.
I wake up at 7 or 8am with a very active 4 year old. Not the kind of 4 year old who is sleepy and snugly for 20 or 30 minutes after waking up, but the kind who from the moment his eyes pop open is hell on wheels, literally. I spend the first 9 or so hours of my day
screaming at him politely telling him no, and trying to stuff healthy foods down his throat. I have also been scurrying about during these hours trying to get some productive things done. You know, such as moving out my ridiculously insane mother's house.
I had found us a nice apartment. Nothing special, just something that will do for now for myself and the kid. Something affordable, which is hard to find when you make minimum wage in Kentucky.
Anyway, around 1pm I usually start getting ready for work. Normally I don't have to be at work until 3pm, but I always start getting ready really early due to the fact that my pampering is usually interrupted by screams of "Mommy, will you get me more fruit punch?" or "Mommy, I had an accident!" The latter usually sucking at least 15 minutes from my "getting ready time."
Then, I am off to work for the next 9 hours.
This is what happened on Tuesday, June 16th as well, only it ended a bit differently.
I walk into work and start making my cup of coffee. This was routine for me. I do not function without caffeine. While quickly mixing my creamer a man whom I work with came up to me and says, "(The manager) wants to see you."
I was thinking "Golly guys. I only borrowed the carpet shampooer. I'm not trying to hold it hostage." That was really the only thing I thought he could possibly ask me about. I happily skipped back to the office ready to tell him my carpet cleaning story. After all, he had okayed it that I borrow the dang thing in the first place.
When stepping to the office door the mood changed. I saw a different kind of look on his face. A solemn look that replaced his usually goofy light-hearted manner. My heart dropped. Honestly, I could feel it.
He hesitated a moment before quietly saying, "We're going to have to let you go."
Silence. I could feel my heart beating and breaking with every breath. This must be a joke. I was waiting for the smile to creep out on his face. It never did.
I believe my first word was "Really?" I couldn't believe it. What had I done? I mean, I know I'm not like the AlphaCashier or anything, but really could I have done anything that bad?
Me : Are you serious?
Him : Yes.
Me : Why?
Him : There really isn't one reason. It just didn't work out after your training.
Me : So there's no reason that you can give me?
Him : No.
Me (at this point holding back tears) : Well, will you open up the back door so I can bring in your carpet cleaner?
And that was that. It was all I could do to keep from falling over dead right there. At this point my whole world depended on that shitty gas station job with all of those backstabbing fake employees. Depended on it. Since he told me that my training would only be for two weeks, and that was up three weeks ago, then I thought it was safe to feel secure in my position. I took on new challenges. New bills. A new life. All based on my shitty minimum wage job.
Right then. Right there. All of that was yanked right out from under me in an instant. It almost took my breath away.
I spent the rest of the evening going from business to business with every one of them telling me, "We're not exactly hiring right now, but you can put in an application." And I did. Then I cried while I drove to the next place, sucked it up, wiped the tears, and did it all over again.
I have applications in all over town, and a few referrals from the Unemployment Office that I'm taking back later today. I also have rent due at the first of July.
Honestly, I'm pretty sure it's because of my birthday. Around this time every year something horrid happens. It really does. It's like the world's way of telling me that my life isn't really all that special anyway - nothing to celebrate (as my mother would say).
So here I am. In my corner of the world. Scurrying about town trying to find any kind of work. When I say any that is what I mean. I even applied for housekeeping positions at motels. I have a little boy who needs a home of his own and who needs his mommy to be strong. So I smile, and continue pretending that everything is fine, and that I'm not scared.
I smile, and I keep on going.