Now What? (Really long rant, sorry)

18 Jun

I haven’t lost my job, yet, but the budget cuts are going through (best case scenario). I just got cut down from full time to 30 hours a week, and with these cuts I’ll either be laid off or cut further.

Alex is about to start the IVIG to prep him for the kidney transplant. We, OF COURSE, don’t have a date yet – but they keep calling him asking him to do random things (psych eval, dentist appointment, abdominal ultrasound, etc) and saying that it will be soon. It will be in LA for sure, which means they will look into making him stay out there in some sort of facility for about four months.

So, that’s just the background. Ya ready for today’s latest and greatest?

My mom can’t watch the girls anymore.

That’s not what she would tell you if you asked her, but she hasn’t watched them for the majority of the past two months and I don’t see things changing anytime soon. Before we went on vacation she wanted a week off (fine), then she had a whole bunch of doctors appointments (fine), then she wanted another week off but wasn’t sure when yet. When we went to Hawaii I asked if she would take her vacation while we took ours “No, I’ve already made other plans for the week you’ll be gone”. When we got back it was more doctors appointments, now her back is out.

I can’t really complain since she refused to let me pay her. But give me a break I need something reliable. When I found out that we were having twins I was REALLY hoping that this arrangement would work out since I could really afford daycare for two (and I sure as F*CK can’t afford it for three!), but I always knew it wouldn’t.

I found a program that will pay for day care for children with special needs if the parents can show a financial need. They said that they have a waiting list and the state budget cuts have left no funding for them to take new participants at this time. They will send me an application, but don’t hold my breath.

So, swallowing my pride, I tried looking into Welfare. Not pretty either. Because my father is a federal employee, he would refuse to participate lest it be an embarrassment to him. Since he is an adult in the home we are living in, they would need info and possibly fingerprints on him. That’s a no go. PLUS, even though we would qualify on every other level, our cars are worth too much money. I have a 2008 Matrix and Hubby has a 2002 Montero Sport. Not luxury cars, and if I end up losing my job my car will be the first thing to go. But right now Hubby needs his to get to dialysis and appointments and I need a nice car for work, it’s part of my job.

Right now Hubby has stopped working (it was under the table anyway) and is staying home with the girls. Once his IVIG starts we are SOL. I have NO CLUE what to do after that. I also have no clue what to do with the girls on dialysis days. I can’t even pay someone to watch them just for those few hours – not without his income.

Oh, and did I mention that I graduated (officially this time) last Thursday and that my student loans will be coming due around the time I am on maternity leave for the Bean?

Seriously, I’m ready to freak the hell out. I have been meaning to make an appointment with a psychiatrist, but I haven’t had time. (Ha!)

I am incredibly depressed and frustrated with all of this. I feel like a huge ass embarrassment. There is a stigma associated with having three kids in two years, with living with my parents, with going on welfare (not that I can even DO that).

How did I get here? I went to college. I got good grades. I went to a good school! I worked my ASS off.

I got married before I had kids.

I was trying for ONE baby!

Not that I didn’t or don’t want three…I DO….I just didn’t want them all at once.

I could have handled daycare for one. I could have taken a second job or looked for a new one if I wasn’t pregnant. I knew better than to get pregnant/have more than one baby before Hubby got his transplant! Life just didn’t work out that way. I just wanted one baby, just in case (God forbid) something happened to Hubby in one of his surgeries or something.

I don’t in ANY way mean to sound ungrateful for the girls or the boy. I am thrilled! They are the one amazingly perfect thing that I have going on right now and all of this stress stems from being worried about giving them all that they need and deserve. I am SO blessed to have gone from not being able to have any babies to being given three amazing miracles.

Now I just need to know how we are going to provide for them. =(

Are the powers that be going to toss me a life preserver anytime soon?

Cause, I’m seriously wigging out. Like, can’t sleep, can’t eat, can’t stop imagining what I will say at my Husbands/daughter’s funerals (though I have no reason to believe that either one of them is going to die anytime soon…it’s all just stress related), can’t perform at work, withdrawing from friends, bat-sh*t crazy!

To add further frustration, Hubby pretty much refuses (or is incapable) of making decisions or even – really – contributing to them. All of the major decisions in this family fall on me. Vacations, health care, employment, vehicles, insurance, finances, living arrangements, EVERYTHING. I have to tell him when to go to the doctor, when to take the girls to the doctor, whether or not Lennon will have surgery, and so on. Most of the time this is great, cause I’m bossy and any arrangement other than this would likely lead to bloodshed (or at least divorce) – right now I just REALLY want someone else to come along with some fantastic answers and plans of action and just make it so that I don’t have to worry about any of it. Just once.

PS Yes, I know how stupid it looks that we just went to Hawaii now. I had no idea I was about to lose my job before we went. It was still worth it.

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10 Responses to “Now What? (Really long rant, sorry)”

  1. Michell June 19, 2009 at 1:26 am #

    I’m sorry this is so stressful right now. I hope it gets better for you somehow. Would you maybe be in a better position to get help if you weren’t living with your parents? Also about the student loans if you work on asking in advance sometimes they will let you delay payments because of hardship or at least give you lower payments to be paid back over a longer period. Thinking of you. Hugs.

  2. seussgirl June 19, 2009 at 4:45 am #

    I’m so sorry you have to go through all of this! I hope something starts looking up for you soon!
    You may not be looking for suggestions, so feel free to ignore this and just hear the empathy in my comment….
    Have you looked into getting your loans deferred? I think they might still accrue interest, but you could put off payments while you’re not working. I don’t know whether maternity leave counts, but it doesn’t hurt to check.
    Also, would WIC be different than welfare? To at least help with food and/or formula if you need it? I don’t know all of the parameters, but again, it might be worth checking into.

    I sincerely hope good things come your way!

  3. Sweet Georgia June 19, 2009 at 5:06 am #

    First, take a deep breath. I completely understand why you’re stressed. I’m so sorry that you’re in this position. Stupid economy! I wish I had some great words of wisdom that could help your situation. About the trip to Hawaii. This was exactly the right time to take it. No regrets, ok?

    IF you lose your job then you can stay with the girls and your hubby can get some work until his surgery. I’ll be keeping all of you in my thoughts.

  4. Emily June 19, 2009 at 6:55 am #

    STOP feeling guilty about the trip, or the lifestyle you have, or the cars you drive. It’s NOT your fault the economy is shit, it’s NOT your fault you had to deal with infertility, it’s NOT your fault about your husbands medical stuff. You didn’t PLAN to have 3 kids (although they are a blessing and you don’t regret them). SO this situation is 100% NOT YOUR FAULT. Which, I know, doesn’t stop you from laying in bed awake at night and going crazy.

    I don’t know what to say. I know no one will want to hire a pregnant person in this economy, but it’s worth a try, right? Is there any way you can start looking for something that can commence once you return from having your new baby? I know that’s grasping and won’t help you now. Is there anything you can do for work at home?

    Ahhh! I wish there was an easy answer. I just hope this turns around for you soon! xoxo

  5. Ms. J June 19, 2009 at 7:16 am #

    Okay, I am doing this on the fly since I have to leave for a meeting, so apologies if this is not fully fleshed out:

    * You typically don’t have to start paying on student loans until 6 months after you graduate (but call and check). You can (I did once upon a time) put your loans into “forebearance” (if you are with a student loan agency and not a bank), which means that you are not making payments, though interest is still accruing. Do NOT try to run away from these, it will ruin your credit forever if you do – call them, and work with them.

    * Car – can you trade down, even if you take a short term loss to get into something less expensive/more gas friendly (I don’t know cars so I have no idea what the models you mentioned are like). I realize you have a problem in that you will need three car seats though. Maybe go with a pre-owned car? Or try a car in which the dealership is going out of business (like Pontiac, or an individual Americanauto dealership that got the GM ax).

    * Hubby health – does the hospital he will be affiliated with have housing options for patients who will be staying for a while? Sorta like the Ronald McDonald House is available for families of kids with medical issues. Likewise, can Lennon get her treatment/surgery at same area as Alex? And then you might be eligible for Ronald McDonald House stay?

    * Parents – if Dad is unwilling to do fingerprinting, ask if her would consider just paying you the money that welfare would have provided?

    * Job – can you begin looking into other cities that do have job growth in your field? I realize you have a lot of balls in the air, but you might have to separate the family for a while in order to have insurance for all and food on the table.

    * Current Job – look into filing a complaint with the EEOC (google it) and see if you can file a claim suggesting you are being downsized or let go because of your pregnancy status (dissbility) or hubby’s health status. Look into your state laws, too. If they receive state money the mere threat of this at work might get them to see you as “a valuable employee” worth keeping all of a sudden. This won’t last forever, but maybe short term breathing room.

    * Doctor/Pregnancy – Would your doctor be willing to put you on disability/bedrest early – maybe this would require them to keep your job and health benefits until everybody has had their surgery?! I have AFLAC (short term disability insurance), so if you have anything like that consider it, too.

    * Consider taking job in retail sector – Home Depot, Starbucks, and some other national chains have health insurance for their full-time employees. Yeah, I know you are getting your degree and whatnot, but I think right now your number one priority (financially) should be keeping health insurance – all five of you have needs, and without it you will spiral into even greater financial, physical, and emotional peril.

    Sorry if any of this sounds rough – like I said, en route to a meeting downtown (ugh, I am now running late, LOL – but YOU are more important!!!!)

    XOXOXOXOXO!

  6. Twomomsandababy June 19, 2009 at 7:57 am #

    I linked to you from Tammy at Tammy’s Journey. I work in studen loan collection – Perkins – Stafford rules are a bit different, but you can get a deferment. There was a deferment years ago for after you had a baby but that is not available any more. You can try for an economic hardship deferment now or an unemployment deferment when and if you lose your job. You can also try for a forbearance. You should contact your lender 30 days before your grace period expires. That will give you time to submit and paperwork that may be required. Please don’t allow yourself to miss any Stafford Loan payments – they are so strict and will not help you after the fact. You must contact your lender the moment you feel you are going to miss a payment. Schools tend to work with you more on Perkins, but those lenders and the feds are ruthless with the Staffords. You can also consolidate and get a longer repayment term (20 years versus 10) which will lower your monthly payment but of course cause you more interest. There are never any penalties for early repayment so you can always double or tripple up on payments when your situation improves. I’ve been doing this for years, you can e-mail me if you need help dealing with your lenders.

    I would still go have an appointment with the welfare office and get all the info. I’ve not read your whole blog so I don’t know the extent of your husbands illness. Can he get social security disability?

    I know how you feel about being overwhelmed. I just had a baby, have PPD, had no paid time off, am the sole wage earner and barely making ends meet, had to go back to work 3 weeks after a c-section, my baby has tummy troubles, i get 3 hours of sleep a night. I’m running on E emotionally and physically. I feel so bad for my 3 year old to have to have a sad and angry mom and I’m not bonding with the baby at all. And my relationship is falling apart and may very well end. And like you, I went to college, am smart, was once a very strong and independent woman. And now I’m a mess with 2 kids, a lot of bills, and unhappy in my relationship. I too don’t know how I ended up like this.

    But I have faith that the tough times will pass and I will be better for it and so will you! All the best to you!

  7. annacyclopedia June 19, 2009 at 1:27 pm #

    I live in Canada so have absolutely no helpful advice on how to navigate the system there to access some services that would help you right now. Wish I could be more help in that department, cause I just desperately want to do something useful for you.

    I can so relate to being tired of making all decisions in a marriage. It is so damn hard sometimes, even if there are times when it is really for the best. I have been in some very dark places over this issue between me and Manny, and I can only imagine how hard it is when the decisions you’re making are as huge as the ones you are facing right now.

    I am holding you all in my heart and in my prayers, wishing you peace and most of all some serious breaks from the Universe. And wishing I could do more.

  8. twondra June 20, 2009 at 3:04 am #

    Oh, sweetie. My heart just breaks for you. I wish this wasn’t so hard. Please don’t feel guilty for going to Hawaii. Mark and I went even though we didn’t have the money (my therapist made us go and I was pissed)….but it was the best thing we ever did. Definitely worth it so please don’t feel guilty.

    Have you ever had a benefit for your hubby? We had 2 for Mark when he went through his transplant and we recieved about $11,000. I wish I was closer to you and then I would throw one for ya. People want to help and it’s a great way to get that help.

    Thinking of you sweetie! (((HUGS)))

  9. Michelle June 24, 2009 at 5:29 am #

    I wish I had some sage words, some helpful advice, but right now, I’ve got nothing, and I am so sorry for that. I wish I could say the one thing you need to hear that would make the maddness stop and everything else in life to fall into place. I am just astounded at how things have been going for you since you got pregnant with the girls. You have been on such a roller coaster ride. And to be honest, I think you are handling it all quite well. Crazy, right? But you are. You’re doing a great job. You’ve put your babies first and foremost, making you a fantastic mother. You’ve put hubs and his needs next and haven’t made a single complaint about him. You’re an amazing, loving wife. While you and your mother might not be the best of friends, you are so appreciative of all the help she has given you thus far. Your a wonderful daughter.

    Things WILL turn the corner at some point. They have to. It seems like we go through periods where the universe pops a squat over our heads and makes itself comfortable for a while, but eventually it gets bored and moves on. I am and have been praying that it gets bored with you really soon. Know that this complete stranger who began following along on your crazy journey while you were doing IVF has you very much in her thoughts and prayers. I am sending so much love and hugs your way.

    *BIG HUGS*

  10. Two Makes Four June 25, 2009 at 6:19 pm #

    Girl, I just want to say that I feel your pain. I’m not going through the same things, but I can totally relate to what you’re saying with my own situation. Don’t worry about the cars/Hawaii thing. I’ve managed to justify not paying the mortgage but buying a $600 camera.

    Cali is shit, sorry to say, and since you’ve got nothing to lose, I’d look into moving.

    You have been blessed with your babies. You’ll make it!

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