Its a beautiful time of year here in NYC, the buds are all starting to bloom, flowers coming up, trees coming back to life. We are very fortunate, we live in a turn of the century brownstone with lots of original details and lots of things we upgraded. One of the things that makes this time of year so nice is that the sun light comes in the windows in the front and back as well as the 2 skylights in the house. After living in Manhattan for 20 years, our home in Brooklyn was the perfect move triple the space, front and back yards not much more than a 2 bedroom in Manhattan. This time of year does bring me a nice feeling, also my birthday is coming up so thats always fun too. One of the things that is very troubling to me with this change of season is that its yes another season where I don’t have a job to go to.
Jobs give you more than a paycheck and sense of accomplishment; they also give you a sense of purpose as well as a place to be 5 days a week from 9-5. What happens to people when you take that away from them? When you take away their reason for getting up in the morning. What is the longterm toll that this will take on our society; and what is the immediate impact its having on those of us who have been out of work a long time. What happens when you take away that daily interaction with your co workers, the laughing, the bitching, the day to day stuff. Since I am living through all of this now I can give some key insight to the human toll of this. Being alone all day is not fun, it can be very lonely and sad. And, who do you talk to about it? Those people I know that are in the boat as I am immediately understand what I am talking about; the ones who aren’t try to understand. It gets harder as time goes on; at first I did try all the things people and therapists recommended, get lots of exercise, go out and see people, keep busy. That worked, kind of, for maybe a year. But then I found myself less and less interested in doing, in meeting people, in going to spin class.
I know I have said this before a lot on this blog but I wish they would breakdown the unemployment numbers and the numbers of people that are back in the workforce by age. I am 47 and I just don’t see people my age being hired. I can see for myself that resumes I send out or networking events I go to haven’t worked out. Now, forget about me, what about all of the other 25 million people un/under employed, what toll is this taking on them? They might also have huge financial burdens that could leave them in dire straits.
The human costs of unemployment are not explored enough; probably because this country hasn’t been in this situation since 1929. What do I do to keep my spirits up? I love seeing the sunlight come into our home; spring starting with new flowers blooming and I have a glimmer of hope that one of my resumes will fall in the right hands. I do not find it negative to discuss the downsides of unemployment, if you keep them inside it will just make it worse. You have to cling to the good things. I have found so many genuine nice people from this blog and from twitter. Total strangers who offer advice, support and encouragement. And thats what the human spirit is all about! Thank you all.