After 6 months of unemployment, I started a new job yesterday. It's only a part-time job an pays only a fraction of what I've been used to making for the last decade, but I've never been happier.
I really didn't write much of my unemployment this time around and I'm not sure why, but I suspicion it had to do more with my outlook than anything. Simply put, I wasn't scared, unhappy, depressed or any of the things one would think came part and parcel with the territory. I really feel it was the best way for me to discern the path I need to take; the new direction.
One of the things which really concerned me during my lean months was the type and quality of foods available [read: affordable] while on a very limited budget. I know I'm guilty of having looked into other carts at the grocery store and thinking, "you wouldn't be overweight if you didn't fill your basket with crap". However, I've changed my opinion. I'm sure there are some who eat junk no matter what their income, but the sad reality is most can't afford the healthy things such as fresh produce and whole grain breads.
Even going to a fast food establishment one sees the same trend. A double cheeseburger is available for $1.00 but a salad (made from iceberg lettuce at that) is $5.00! It doesn't take an advanced mathematician to figure out which economic class is eating the double cheeseburger. And I'm not even going to start on how the very class who either doesn't have health insurance or can't afford it are those most likely to need it once their arteries are caked with plaque because they had to survive by eating meals picked from the dollar menus!
But, I digress.
I've had six months to witness firsthand the challenges faced by countless Americans each day. During those times I was thankful to know my situation was temporary, but my heart was so convicted about how much actual wealth I had squandered over the years. So, I'm switching gears and my life has a new direction. Even this blog has taken a new direction during the last half year and I appreciate those who have stuck with me as I discover the new path. [and, if you miss the fluffier reading, feel free to check out my other blog As Seen in the 405!]
Trying to tie this up and connect the dots, I resisted taking a job which was only part-time. This particular job was dangled in front of me almost 2 months before I acted on it. But, now I feel it's absolutely where I needed to be, for lots of reasons. I really want to do something to make my community a better place. I know I don't have much to give monetarily, but my heart and my drive is full and ready to give, so I'm exploring ways to start some sort of community garden which will, hopefully, make fresh produce affordable to those who need it most. Working part time is going to give me that opportunity and I couldn't be happier about it.
Watch for more info about the community garden as I learn and work through the process. I can't change the world, but I'm going to do my damnedest to make a difference where I live!