I tried writing this earlier and Tumblr ate it, which was disheartening enough that I nearly took it as a sign from the universe that writing this post was a dumb idea. But let’s face it, if I paid attention to signs from the universe, I’d have done a lot of stupid things in my life. Well, stupider things.
Two months ago, I was the recipient of extraordinary generosity from friends on Tumblr who aided me in getting my computer fixed after six months of it being on its last legs, and I’ve been meaning to marshal an appropriate thank you post for that, because it actually did mean the world to me and has made a huge impact on my quality of life.
However, I am here asking for you help again, of a slightly different sort.
By the end of March I need to find a new place to live. I’ve been living here rent free for over a year and this is in no way a surprising or unreasonable turn of events, and in fact it wouldn’t be a big deal at all—except that my employer, after dangling a 35 hour work week in front of me for the last two weeks, has reneged and is now saying “Maybe April. Maybe. Not sure.” So that leaves me making slightly above or below $100 a week, depending on whether I sneak in any overtime. Which is not a monetary figure bound to impress any potential landlords.
Basically, I need a better job. And it’s not that I don’t have employable skills! I have a college degree, I have over 6 years of experience in health aide work, I have strong reading, writing, and editing skills, and I’m generally an organized and reliable person in the workplace. However, when it comes to organizing a job search, my head is a complete mess. I think about the future and my head is just full of weeds and smog. I have PTSD, as most of you long time readers will know, but I’ve been doing a much better job managing it lately: I’m back on meds, I’ve got a structure for my days, I’m journaling and doing all that self-reflecty stuff that a therapist would probably be telling me to do if I could afford a therapist…but this turn of events seems to be turning all that progress upside down.
Since August of 2011 I’ve ended up homeless and living in my car twice. I’ve lived on the charity of other people for most of 2012 and all of 2013. I do know how it happened; when your brain completely shuts down and reboots after consciously absorbing the knowledge that certain kinds of trauma happened in your past, it doesn’t leave room for executive functioning. I am frankly lucky as hell that people took pity on me and supported me long enough for my brain to start to reknit itself somewhat, because people like me who don’t get the kind of help I’ve had generally self-destruct in short order. And I honest to god feel like I could just…move on and live my life at this point if I could just get past the blank, staring terror that I’m feeling right now, because I can’t imagine a future in which I’m not living in my car again.
So…what I’m asking is, not really for money (although it would be disingenuous to pretend I couldn’t use it, and I have put the donate button back up on my main blog page). But what I could really use is for the Tumblr braintrust to try and…help me see my way through this more clearly. At this point, I’m so screwed in the head that I can’t even navigate the services that help the mentally ill find jobs (not that there are like, a lot of those.)
If I had friends who didn’t live on the internet, this is the kind of favor I’d be asking them. But I’ve been hiding in my room for…pretty much years now. So I’m asking you guys instead. It is humiliating, and I hate it, but I’m asking. Whatever you can cobble together with your collective cleverness and resources…I could use the guidance.
(ps reblogging appreciated)