It was with devastating clarity that I realized there is no way I’m getting my job back.
It happened yesterday. I was talking to D—, this guy at my old job I really respected, who was asking me if I was applying anywhere. He asked me what I’d like to do, what field I wanted to work in. I wanted to cry. There. I wanted to work there, with the refugees. But it was then and there that I knew that wasn’t going to be.
After I was laid-off, I was replaced by a series of interns and volunteers. All those territorial thoughts I had about them usurping my role and me being a merely notch below unpaid labor turned out to be true. My position had become redundant.
Knowing that solidified another heartbreaking fact—that despite all the love I had for the refugee center and everyone there—it wasn’t enough. Compassion and care is nice when it’s backed up with resources and skills and I had neither: I can’t speak another language (todavìa). I’m not qualified to be a case worker, grant writer or resettlement agent. I’m not even a foreigner. I’m simply just another dumb, monolingual American.
Going home after volunteering all day and feeling like I could be a part of the RC, I skid right back into grieving. Only instead of going through to anger or acceptance, my despair exacerbated my depression (big shocker right? A depressed, unemployed writer) and last night I came the closest I’ve ever been to attempting suicide.
A lot of people might find it stupid and short-sighted to try and kill yourself over a job you only had for 11 months but the pain wasn’t caused by unemployment or financial stress. Relationships mean a lot to me. Every job I’ve ever had I’ve gotten extremely close to at least one person. This was different. I got ridiculously close to a lot of people. To me, I didn’t lose a job. I lost an entire extended family.
And on the day you’re supposed to feel the most loved, I felt way too much. So much that it overstepped the love and affection that I was supposed to be showering the actual love of my life, my boyfriend of 4 years who did his absolute best to support me through this loss. It wasn’t enough though. After 12 days of alternating from sobbing to sleeping to smoking, I decided on Valentine’s Day my heart couldn’t bare it anymore.
I asked my boyfriend to make me some tea. When he left I locked the bedroom door, wrote what I wanted to ne my suicide note, I went to my window opened it up and got my desk.
I lived on the second floor, which even in my dumbass distress knew wouldn’t kill me, so I decided blunt force trauma was going to do. I was going to fall head first and either crack my skull or break my neck.
I was bent over my window sill when the cold air made me want to pee. Seeing I didn’t want to die pissing myself, I got off my desk and went to the bathroom.
That short walk to the bathroom changed everything.
The rest of the night I went to crying and complaining and to going back to crying, though I did end up showing Sal how good empanadas are (what’s not to love about essentially a deep-fried taco?).
It was easily our least romantic (but probably more historically accurate) Valentine’s Day. (St. Valentine was beheaded for his beliefs in noble love).
I really don’t have a point to this story. I’m still lost and jobless. I’m volunteering back at the center, which I know sounds a lot like getting dumped and going back to your ex just to be your booty call, but I still believe in the cause.
I’m applying for jobs and I’m writing.
I’m still not all the way better but I didn’t cry today so that’s already better than yesterday. Hopefully I’ll find a new purpose in life. Until then, I’m just going to stay put and keep my window closed.