Thursday, November 17, 2011

Catching up on gratitude

Yesterday I meant to write a blog post continuing with my theme of Gratitude. Unfortunately, I had a really rough day at work, and fell asleep early last night. So today I will write the post I meant to write yesterday.

I am grateful for my job.  Is it perfect?  Far from it!  In fact, I have been somewhat disappointed in it.  I always wanted to work in a bookstore or library, but it turns out that a retail job is pretty much the same no matter what you're selling.  And some of the people I work with are mean, backbiting, gossipy, and difficult.  This has been a tough thing for me to adjust to since there is not the same spirit of teamwork and camaraderie as at my last job, which I had for almost 8 years.  When we went out of business at the beginning of the year, it was sad and scary.  Most of the people there felt like family to me, and even though we had the normal stresses of working in retail, pretty much everyone got along and liked each other.  Now there is the retail stress, like always, but the people at my new job don't like each other, for the most part.  There is also a tendency for several of them to slack off, then look for others to criticise and blame for the results.  My boss is a wonderful, decent, caring person, but she does not like confrontation and tends to ignore behavior that really hurts morale and should be addressed.

So why am I thankful for the job?  Well, to begin with, I was able to start the job two days after my last one ended.  Although I took a pay cut (I went from being a store manager to one of three merchandise managers) it was not too severe, and my pay is adequate for my simple lifestyle.  Most importantly, I was able to get health coverage for myself and my husband.  He works for a small business that doesn't offer it, and is also partially self-employed, so I have always carried insurance for us. That was one of my main concerns when I found out I was losing my job at the beginning of the year--losing our access to health care.  For those readers that don't live in the USA, let me just tell you.....our health care costs are astronomical, and if you don't have coverage (and coverage is expensive, even when you have an employer's group plan) you are going to be royally screwed if anything happens that requires any sort of hospital care.  And drugs are terribly, terribly expensive...even maintenance drugs that you need to take on an ongoing basis.   Health care in the US is a nightmare, but again, that's a rant for another day. I was able to get both of us covered at my new job within 60 days of starting.  I was really grateful for that.

Another reason I am thankful for the job: our economy is in the toilet. So many people are out of work, and have been out of work for months. I was so fortunate to find a job right away when so many other people have lost jobs and have been unable to find another. I also got about 2 months salary as severance pay, and was able to put it all in savings. That gives us a tiny bit of extra security, and I know how fortunate that makes us. 

So even though I don't love my job, even though some days are so stressful I leave in tears, even though I would like to do something that speaks to my soul.....I know that I am blessed to be able to pay my bills, to be reasonably comfortable financially, to have some small savings to fall back on...and of course, health care coverage. I am doing my best to remember these things when I feel sorry for myself for not liking my job.

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