How are you? Tell me all the new things that have happened. The weird, the wonderful and all the things that are going to remind me this is real life. Right now, life feels a bit like some warped movie that I can’t seem to stop.
In one word this week has been…actual shit (sorry mum, I know I shouldn’t swear). But really it has been a sack of the stuff.
Aaron got called back from Furlough on Monday and by Wednesday he was made redundant.
It isn’t the first time we’ve been here, it’s the second. And it isn’t any less scary; I just feel less hopeless than I did the first time. People around you will tell you its going to be fine, that you’ll work it out, that something better will be around the corner.
I believe those things.
I don’t believe them all the time; just in flashing moments between a flurry of other emotions.
It’s okay to not be okay
Whether you were expecting to be made redundant or not that phone call or meeting with HR and your manager is hard. Your mind will be jumping all over the place as they read that script and it’s okay to feel like you need to ask a million questions without being able to string a sentence together. But once that’s over you have to tell the people around you. I can still see Aarons face now as he told me what I already knew, both times are burned into my brain.
People kept asking us, ‘Are you okay?’. Honestly, part of me wanted to say no but mostly I just said I was fine. I don’t know why because I wasn’t really okay and I’m not convinced Aaron was okay either.
But its really okay to not be okay.
that saying has been banded around a lot over the last few years but I’m not convinced that it really is.
The different kinds of people
When you tell people bad news or tell them you’re not okay – in my experience – they will tell you things to try and make you feel better. Granted – I also do this. Compartmentalising people is helping me right now.
- The match your mood person
This is my best mate. My sister. My dogs. They are sad when you’re sad, they share your anger and try and find resolutions when you start thinking out loud about how to fix things. Sometimes it’s nice not to hear that everything will be okay and to not have a positive mental attitude. I just want to be sad sometimes.
- The positive thinkers
Our parents, in fact both our families. I am very lucky to have two incredible families but they’re all positive thinkers. The something better will be just around the corner, the it could be so much worse, the you don’t want to work for them anyway they are shits. These people are needed in your inner circle because sometimes you just need to appreciate things could be worse and despite the situation you have a lot to be thankful for.
- The dick heads
You know them, right? We ALL know at least one these. The kind of people that never stop talking and the whole time they are talking you’re telling them to shut up in your head. They want to make themselves feel better about a situation that they may have caused but when push comes to shove, they are just relieved they’re fine. I doubt they’ll ever read this but if you do. I would say. I am totally glad you’re fine, now fuck off I hope karma grabs your ass.
It will get better.
Once I have stopped thinking about myself and my little family I think about how many other people are in this same position. In Aaron’s case – 105 other people. Covid19 has some nasty side effects and redundancy is just one of them. I think I cried for each of them.
For the panic about how am I going to pay my mortgage, the where do I go from here panic, for all the things that make life sweet that are going to need to temporarily stop while you sort yourself out. But it will get better, time helps, being proactive helps, being kind to yourself helps.
So, basically, life right now in so many ways is great. Aaron is home full time which makes me realise how much I missed him when he worked away. But life is also like some kind of sick roller coaster of emotions going through a black hole and although there is light at the end I don’t feel like it’s going to be a very linear journey.
Things to remember
- It will be okay, it will get better
- Redundancy (I don’t think, or in our case) isn’t personal. They are making the job redundant, not you personally.
- Please be kind to yourself. If you don’t feel like getting out of bed don’t, just make sure you get some food and drink into you, don’t cut yourself off, sit in silence with someone is better than doing it alone. You are not alone. Sometimes I imagine, as I write this that you the reader are here with me.
- There are lots of formal places to find out about redundancy and lots of people who can help you – I have popped a few at the bottom of this letter. Ask for help when you need it.
- Finally, as Ray would say ‘it is what it is’.
So that’s what is with me this week. What have you been up to?
All my love
UK Government Advice: https://www.gov.uk/redundancy-your-rights
ACAS Redundancy Advice: https://www.gov.uk/redundancy-your-rights
Citizens Advice on Redundancy https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/work/leaving-a-job/
Martin Lewis: Money Saving Expert Advice: https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/family/redundancy-help/
Samaritans (Mental Health Charity): https://www.samaritans.org/