Thursday, September 15, 2011

Ends … and Beginnings

I haven’t written in a while. Suffice it to say that I’ve had a lot on my mind and that I’ve got even more on my plate.

Things continue to deteriorate with Ozzie. He is in remarkably good shape considering that each and every day brings the discovery of a new tumor or of a new gland that has swelled. He continues to eat like a dog three times his size (and would eat more if we’d give it to him, but I’m afraid overloading his system would negate the ground that he has, so far at least, managed to hang onto.

So, watching that part of life has been incredibly hard. And I’ve had plenty of time to prepare myself for the idea that it is only going to get a lot harder.

Summer has had its unofficial end (Labor Day) and the official one is just around the corner. Mother Nature has reminded us of this by plunging us into the 40s. Brrrrrrr…

Today also brings a new end for me. One that I am much less prepared for, but making it work just the same. Today is the last day, for now at least, that I have a full-time job. I go part-time starting tomorrow. I’m not happy about it, but have made my peace with it. Let’s just leave it at that.

I’ve explored a variety of interim options, none of them ideal, but at least they’re options, right?

It’s been a humbling, and at times demeaning, experience to see just what some people are willing to offer for work – and what some are willing to accept. Writers really are a dime a dozen anymore. In fact, that may be overstating the price considering that one “offer” paid $1.50 for a 500-word article. If you calculate the time to do the research, to write, to edit for the “perfect grammar” this offer demanded, I made a lot more money as a 15-year-old earning 1980s-era minimum wage. I politely declined.

But, in some respects, I’ve been very lucky and snagged a few gigs that aren’t dehumanizing, that are, in fact, reasonable. Rest assured, I’ve welcomed them with both hands. It’s meant going both night and day most of the time but I’ve never been one to shy away from hard work or to ever back down from a worthwhile fight.

While it has been tough to do so (optimism has never been one of my strong suits), I’m keeping the faith that the next new beginning is out there, circling, just waiting to land. And, I’m not sitting at home, waiting for news of its arrival. Oh, no. As soon as it dips beneath the clouds and into my view, I’ll be waiting. With a lasso. Or maybe a ladder.

Or maybe standing on the tarmac, waving it in, ready to climb aboard …


Karen Anne said...

I'm sorry about Ozzie and your job.

I was laid off 4-5 times (I actually forget how many) back in the dot com collapse. It really is a blow on so many levels. That seems to be life in the U.S. these days, with neither political party lifting a hand to do anything significant about it. Well, the Dems have tried some things, I'll give them that.

Good luck.

Vicki said...

I do see optimism in your post. Whether it's forced or natural, it'll help in your near future. I pray that good leads come your way and they're worth the effort and time!

MonkeyGirl said...

Just remember your karmic good luck and the fact that a ton of people love you and are rooting for you!! Big hugs MEF!!

Why S? said...

Strength and courage to both you and Ozzie.

Elaine said...

I have so been there (freelanced full time for 4 years). It's infuriating - even insulting - how low wages have gotten for writers. Crossing my fingers for you.

Karen Anne said...

Is there a Patch web newspaper in your town? I hear they only pay the editor a salary, the others work for a pittance, but if there isn't one yet, maybe you should contact them about starting one.

I don't see one in their listings for St. Louis(?):

Jayne said...

That's difficult news about Ozzie and about your job. I wish you both the best.