Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Tough Times

So, Ralph hasn't worked since Sept 30th last year. He had a lead on a short term job that was for 3 months, it was supposed to start Jan 1. Then, about 2 weeks before the start date, he found out it wasn't going to happen. Ok, he's continued to apply for jobs. BUT, there was another job that had been promised him.

Just so you know, Ralph's a licensed contractor, who worked for the last 8 years as an inspector for the Coast Guard on construction projects. Now big construction projects don't happen overnight...there are contracts and stipulations, changes to original drawings, etc. If you've ever done a remodel on your house, you have a rough idea of what it's like, only when you are dealing with 30 million dollar projects, it's even more complex.

In February, 2008, when Ralph retired from the Coast Guard, well, there weren't a lot of construction projects going on. Which is why, when he had the chance to go up to Alaska for 5 months of work, we all bit the bullet and off he went, leaving me and the kids on our own for 5 months. Now, my hat is tipped to all you single parents, especially single parents by choice, because it's a lot of work and I know it. But, it wasn't what I was used to and the kids missed Ralph terribly. When you are 4 and 5 years old, 5 months away is a long time.

Anyway, there was a local job, an 18 month long job, that was supposed to begin May 1. The company basically promised Ralph the job..."You are the man we want" were the kind of words we kept hearing as Ralph would check in every month or so. Of course, in the meantime, he's still been applying for other jobs. But again, in case you haven't seen the news lately, there's just not a lot of construction going on, especially big construction. Yeah, the stimulus money is supposed to help....sometime....down the line....in the future....I guess.

Well, today, the company that promised him the job that was supposed to start May 1st called and told him that they changed their mind and instead of a contractor acting as inspector, they wanted an electrical engineer. Great. Thanks. Just what we needed to hear.

I keep telling myself that we can ride this out, that we will make it through, after all, we've been through worse, with Marielle's cancer treatment. But honestly, I'm scared. Very scared. We won't run out of money tomorrow, we've lived below our means for many years and we have no debt, other than our mortgage, but still....I keep thinking, how long can we go on, with nothing but unemployment coming in? When, when will Ralph get a job?

I would go out tomorrow and work if I could. I have an upcoming surgery...I don't have a date scheduled yet but it should be next month. So, I guess I'll make it through that and then go temp, at least until Ralph gets a job.

I just hate this.....

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