When you just want your spouse to respect your need to work, even though your work is something that is done at home on the computer (photo editing and freelance writing and graphic design). Why is that so hard? If he was the one bringing home the bacon that paid all our bills, padded our savings and retirement and allowed for the odd vacation now and again, I’d be cool letting him veg all day on this rainy Saturday. But on the flip side, he works his office job (The one we hope becomes perm in FY2016 which starts in a few weeks…), then goes and works on this shed he’s been building for a friend the past 3 months. He’s pooped, I get it. I however play single parent during the week (even when we see him home on a weekday it’s usually after dinner and the girls say hi, he changes into grubbies and takes the car to go work on the shed – leaving me to deal with bedtimes entirely alone, again). I’m pooped by the weekend too but cherish the fact that I could get serious work done for multiple hours in one go. Sadly that never happens. I suppose it seems only logical that I could very well go get a job at costco and work weekends, thus forcing him into the role of house-husband and caregiver for the children two days a week. But I don’t. I just want a few hours of time with out the interruption of children and also without the children being babysat by screens (because lets face it, that’s how I manage to get dinner on the table every day during the witching hour). I also like the fact that on a saturday I can work during the DAY, instead of sitting down at 9:30pm to get going.

But I’m supposed to use this place to stay positive so in that vein, Hooray for the rain, we really needed it. Hooray for a roof with no holes in it (although boo to the gutters that obviously need to be cleaned). Hooray for the freelance job that is sort of a trial for a bigger project to come. Hooray for fall photoshoot season. Hooray for the brown rice and beans in the crockpot simmering away till dinner time (and boo to the children who won’t eat it but Hooray for the 9 year old who can fix them mac and cheese). Hooray for church tomorrow and dinner with inlaws (which means being sent home with leftovers). Hooray for groceries and school clothes and new backpacks paid for by others. Hooray for mortgage loan readjustment. Hooray for access to social services. Hooray for lorazepam.

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Today has sucked. I had to call my therapist to refill a script that requires her to do a prior authorization (because medicaid would like me to switch to a different generic than the one I’m on and have been on for 8 years…) and I know she’s going to want me to come in, which I can’t afford, even though I know she’ll bill me what I can pay and even then I’ll just feel guilty. I had a hang tag on my door from I assume the sheriff’s office that said NOTHING except to call a number IMMEDIATELY. I called and thankfully it took me to my mortgage company and because we are in the 3 month trial for loan modification they have to verify that the house was occupied. I’m kind of wondering why they didn’t knock; since a simple look into our living room would confirm that we were deeply entrenched here with no plans to hightail it out anytime soon. I still have to call the endocrinologist and decide if I want to try for a new endo just this once or get in to see a new GP who takes my medicaid and get her/him to give me the prior authorization to see my old endo. Honestly going to a new endo sounds like less work since it would only be one dr appointment instead of two. I think.

HOWEVER, a friend’s husband’s business that he runs has been going through tough times. She’s been out of the workforce for a few years but does mostly freelance TV production work which is horribly unreliable if it’s how you’re trying to support a family. So, she signed up for food stamps. I’m glad I could talk her through it and how it works when you need to buy toilet paper but you know your SNAP card won’t cover that. How it works at the end of the month when you plan on emptying out your card (don’t use the self-checkout, it won’t work there). How it doesn’t refill on the 1st of the month but goes depending on your last name. All stuff I found out by trial and error and fits of panic but for once, I saw something positive out of our whole ordeal: the ability to help someone else during their similarly tough time and ease some of their anxiety about a process they’ve never used or thought they would even need.  And that felt good. For once, some little bit of good came out of our hardship and that made the burden feel a little more bearable.

That being said, the end may sort of be in sight: Hubs job, currently a temp makeing 22.50 an hour for something that requires 10 years experience, has been re-worked and re-definied to suit him and their needs for that position (it was an HR assistant but they really need more of a Senior HR generalist who can also help in some program development), and at an appropriate salary! With all the benefits of a full time perm employee! It’s on the cutting board for the FY2016 budget meeting happening in 2 weeks. If it’s approved, he could potentially start as a real employee on October 1st. Praying it goes through and praying the salary is enough (because if it isn’t he’ll have to keep looking but at least we’ll have the stability of a salary and benefits in the meantime).

To friends who have gotten married in the past 2.5 years that we were unable to attend your wedding because it was out of state, or get you a wedding gift (I have a list for when we have enough money of what I’m getting each of you), I’M SORRY. It sucks to have missed out on multiple special days in our friend’s lives; and sucks that I couldn’t pick out a fancy and fun gift to give you to mark this important milestone.

To my kid’s friends who got crappy cheap birthday presents over the past 2.5 years, I’M SORRY. It’s not that I think you needed something big and expensive to show my kid’s love for you, but you’re kids. It’s hard to explain things like this to my own kids, let alone their friends. I think we did OK; I’m pretty sure everyone loves stickers and funky pens and fresh new notebooks and playdoh (always a cheap standby that everyone loves to open a new can of).

To my kids: I’M SORRY. We haven’t been able to go on vacation for 4+ years now. Or take trips to amusement parks or local expensive attractions that require tickets. Partly we can’t afford these things and partly the stress of the past 2.5 years has beaten me down I’m so exhausted I can’t comprehend taking a day trip. Even a low cost one where you pack your own food requires gas and ice cream and that add up when your budget is in the red every single month. I’m sorry you don’t get to go to camp again this year. I’m sorry we can’t go see the new summer blockbusters coming out in the theatre. I’m sorry I’m such a grump so often and lose my cool so easily. I have zero patience left and am in a constant state of alert. My body hurts and you just want to play with me at the pool and I discourage it. I’m so sorry. This whole situation has left me not the mom I want to be, and I know daddy feels the same way. It hurts my heart to hear you complain that you don’t see him often enough and that he doesn’t come to the pool to play with you (thank god for the pool, though). We love you, and we hope our love shines through and you see that despite having a summer very different from your friends.

You don’t know stress till you have to re-upload all the loan modification documents, both the initial ones and the additional information ones, to your mortgage company a month after you sent over the first batch. They were all there last week when I called to check in, why they weren’t there today I don’t know. But I at least got a loan officer on the phone who gave me her personal email (not the modification assistance general mailbox) to send these docs directly to her.

Word to the wise: always track every conversation with mortgage or home equity loan companies. Even if it’s just the date, who you spoke to, and the result that everything is “in process.” You never know when all that will be essential, even the simplest of interactions. Thank goodness I love spreadsheets.

Trying to summon the strength, courage and will power to call the mortgage company in order to check on the status of our loan modification.

Hubs got a job lead today that’s very promising, but 3 hours away; hoping they approve telework or that there’s an office closer we don’t know about. Although working alone is not one of his strengths…

Also, laundry day. My least favorite chore. I’ve been sucking because I hate it and I have so many things I hate to do on my plate (see making phone calls about loan statuses and paying bills with money we don’t have). 3 loads will get the hamper out of dangerous spillage territory, 3 loads tomorrow will get us through the week. I swear it spawns when we’re not looking.

Then grocery shopping with food stamps! Yay! That’s actually kind of fun because I can go willy-nilly in the produce aisle and buy everything I want. The only retail therapy I get these days.

Adulting is hard.

***UPDATE*** Took me till wednesday morning to call and it’s still in review. Thankfully they don’t need any more additional documents so it should go smoothly from here. Hoping we are approved for the Fanny Mae (or is it Freddy Mac? I can’t keep them straight) 40 years at 4% locked in. That would reduce our monthly payments a lot and free up some cash flow in the future. Hopefully at some point we’d be able to pay more than the required principle so that 40yrs shrinks down to something more manageable. God, in 40 yrs I’ll be 77 and hubs will be 90. That’s depressing. Guess we’re dying in this house unless the market takes an upswing.