Everything is upside down, inside out, backwards. Is it Monday? Tuesday? No clue. And that's not good. My daughter is still going to daycare (two weeks notice required) so I have a quiet house…to sit in the dark, alone, and sulk, in my pjs. Like I said, not good.
Today I need to visit the jobs' office to certify my unemployment claim with the state. Ugh. I thought I could do everything online, but I'm required to appear in person. A few hours later I manage to haul my introvert butt into the building and internally cringe.
I am not meant to be here. Nope. Not me.
In my super-judgmental, white-privileged head I think: This is a place for displaced tradesmen, laid-off auto workers, people without degrees. Not me.
But, yes, me. I am no better than anyone here who is seeking work. I feel out of place, for sure, but that's ok. Every person has their own journey and story…who am I to judge any of them? I know one of my biggest fears (aside from getting another job) is being unfairly judged.
There are very few people who know I was fired, just some close friends and family. I plan to keep it that way. Even if the people who know me aren't passing judgement, I feel like they are. I am woefully insecure about my unemployed/terminated status. I feel like a giant failure, and I assume others see me as that too.
Rational, irrational. It doesn't matter. These feelings are real to me.
I tuck my judgey-ness away, take a big-girl breath, and ask for help, because I need it. I have no idea what I am doing. A young man comes to my computer and asks how he can help. I explain everything and he is a calming wave in my storm. He walks me through the unemployment and job search process and helps me complete the right screens online. He reviews a stack of paper with me and gives me contact numbers and web addresses.
He is kind. Ridiculously kind. And I am thankful. "Thank you for being so helpful and kind." I make sure to say these words to him. And give him a smile. He doesn't have to be so thorough or soft spoken or compassionate or human. He could just be professional and direct and dry. But I am grateful for this young man. I needed this today. It costs nothing to be nice.