I want to assure people that we are 'hanging in there'. In fact, if I was going to be perfectly honest, Tim's phone call did not warrant much of a response, not emotionally.
"It is what it is."
The problem is not money. The first time that Tim got laid off all those years ago, he was angry. Plain and simply angry. He made up his mind that he would NEVER be dependent on a company again. We would rely on ourselves.
We did. We have. We've been successful at that.
The issue will be, as it always is, insurance. We are at an age where being without insurance is a very scary thing. We also are at an age where getting insurance on our own is prohibitively expensive, especially for someone with cancer in her medical history.
So...I'll probably go back to work. Since the focus is not so much financial as it is finding a job with insurance, I can be a little picky. I want to work with children. I'd like to be part of Head Start. I think it would be very rewarding.
Tim? Well, he's in the middle of a rehab right this minute. He'll just go back to that full time when he's done where he's at.
Of course, we don't have a time frame for this closure. My company announced their decision to close up shop at the beginning of September. They are still closing down. Siemens is a global company and they are in the middle of projects right now. I imagine that they will finish up what they are doing before they close their doors. They'll also have to move a lot of machinery from one plant to another. So whatever happens will not happen over night.
If it takes a year to shut down, Tim and I will be just shy of turning 65 which makes us eligible for Medicare, the old folks insurance which is affordable.
In short, we'll be fine. We'll be good.
Today, I went to work at our food pantry.
It was a slow day.
Much to my surprise, I saw a woman walking past the doors. She had a huge back pack with a sleeping bag and her tent. A skinny dog. She's wearing a long skirt, carrying two very old books, leading her dog.
Me, being always curious, (nosy?) shot out the door right after her,
Her name was Bonnie. She's from Georgia. She's been on the road for four years. She is a pilgrim.
Well. That's interesting.
Right away, you could see that there was a very disordered thought process. A rational person would not be heading north in the winter. I know we're expecting another cold snap and another storm front to move through, so I invited her in the church, to help herself to whatever she wanted from the food pantry. She and her dog came in, but she was uneasy. She didn't want food. All she eats is porridge. I offered her some packets of dried milk.
No. She has repented of processed foods.
"Well," I said, "What CAN we do for you? What do you need?"
And she replied, "I need someone to minister to me."
I sat down and said, "Pull up a seat. Let's talk."
She said that it had to be a man. "No offense," she said.
I said, "None taken."
She then said, "I need to leave. I am not comfortable." She went on to say that she had also repented of idols, and the crucifix (a large concrete celtic cross in the narthex) had frightened her. She also said that her dog shouldn't be in church.
"We don't mind. We have a couple of people who bring their dogs with them to service."
"They shouldn't, They should be worshipping."
Interesting. I didn't bother to explain about service dogs.
I saw her out the door and wished her well. I made a call to EOC, talked to our priest who had been upstairs recording his noonday service. Turns out that the town is aware of her. She's been here for four days. People have been attempting to help her. The only thing she will accept is shelter for her and the dog.
I finished up my morning feeling very, very fortunate indeed. I've got a roof over my head, a sound mind (no comments from the peanut gallery!) and no wondering about where my next meal is coming from.
Not everyone has that and I saw that close up today.
Driving home, I looked for her but did not see her. I found myself wondering what had happened to her in her life to break her so completely.
She's a poor soul, and I am not just talking about her finances.