Friday, June 27, 2014

Big News

I'm recovering this morning from a visit from Princess June. At three years old, it was her first time to visit alone. As the little sister, she's always been here with her big sister. I took lots and lots of pictures and there will be several blog posts coming up. But first, I have some big news to report.

Pending a background check, a physical, and a drug test, Patrick has found a job. It's right here in Corpus Christi so we won't have to relocate. He'll be doing inside sales for a company that sells many of the things he's sold in the past -- industrial hoses and fittings, gaskets and packing, expansion joints, and other industrial products and services. The pay is somewhat less than he was previously earning, but the benefits are good and, after a year, he will participate in their bonus program which should help with the salary difference. And, there is a good chance for advancement.

We expect that he will start working sometime late in July, which is perfect timing because his severence and benefits from his old company expire at the end of July. The only concern we have is that the new company has a three month waiting period before their health insurance kicks in, so we're looking at potentially two-to-three months without health insurance. And, before you ask, we have already explored the COBRA option. At more than $1,100 per month, we simply can't afford it. So we're looking around for some gap coverage.

In addition, the whole time we've been dealing with the job loss and job search, we've also been dealing with my mother-in-law's declining health. She's 84 years old and has been in reasonably good shape until recently. Since May she's had a mild stroke which has left her with significant weakness on one side, a surgical procedure to open a blockage between her kidney and bladder, and now she has hairline fractures of two vertabrae.

She can no longer take care of herself and, even though one of her daughters lives with her, family members have had to step up to help take care of her. For me, that means cooking meals to send down to her several times a week. For Patrick, that means helping transport her from home to medical testing and doctor appointments a couple of times a week. It also sometimes means just sitting with her. It's been keeping us busy.

Now, about my long absence from blogging ... I don't really know how to explain it. Patrick and I were talking about it last night. It's like this whole experience just kind of stole my voice. I would think of topics to write about. I would even start writing. But I would not or could not finish and publish them. Our life went on almost like normal. We never missed a paycheck, but there was a huge feeling of loss. I can only compare it to the death of a loved one. There was always this spector of impending disaster in the distance.

Thank you to to all of my blogging buddies who have checked on me from time to time. I can't tell you what that meant to me.

I would also like to thank the staff at the school where I substitute. The ladies at Wood River Primary School, especially Dawn Denman who handles scheduling, kept me working almost every day from the time I told them that Patrick was losing his job until the end of the school year. I truly appreciate their thoughtfulness and support. It would have been so much harder without them.

I'm hoping that as he goes back to work, life will get back on track and I'll be able to get back to blogging on more of a regular basis. I guess time will tell.


  1. This is wonderful news! I am so very happy for both of you and I completely understand about COBRA and making the choice to go without insurance because you would rather eat and pay the light bill. It is ridiculous that we have to make those choices.
    I do hope you're back! I can understand why having the rug pulled out like that would take you voice away. My fingers are crossed for you both.

  2. I am so happy that Patrick has found a job and things are looking up for you! As I read this post, it was so clear to me that even though difficulties come along to bother us all, those with strong family support manage to get by with the least amount of damage. All of you work together to take care of each other. That's so beautiful to see!

  3. I understand the need to 'recover' from a visit from a little one. While I don't have the grands yet, I do have a nephew and his wonderful wife who bring their two little ones over from time to time. I LOVE these visits. However, now that there are two of them, I always make sure someone else will be here to help. They are 19 months and 3 months. I"m flat out exhausted when they leave. Though it is a good kind of exhaustion. So good to know about the job! I'm not sure why anyone thinks COBRA is helpful. Who can afford it? I also understand the blog absence though mine always seems so selfish. Hang in there with the intensity of helping out with your MIL. It's not easy. I clearly remember when we were helping out with mine. I know it means so much to them.