When life gives you oranges and limes....
The lonely business is I speak of is...unemployment.
Two days after surgery on my foot (almost three weeks ago), my husband came home in the afternoon with a look on his face that betrayed the reason he had come home early. He had been fired. As I was resting comfortably on the sofa with my foot wrapped in an ice pack, creating a rosary on my lap, he could not have surprised me more had he slapped me (my husband does not slap me). I think my heart stopped for a minute or two -- at least it felt that way.
I thank God that in 30 years of marriage we have never had to deal with unemployment. That fact, however, doesn't make it any easier right now.
I can't divulge much (because we're still trying to negotiate a severance) except that he was the vice president of a Catholic university, and his dismissal was not, at all, handled in a Christ-like manner. We still do not know why he was fired, and as Ohio is an at-will state, one can be fired for any reason, or none at all. We're still reeling from him being fired, so there is a lot of "gunk" running through our heads every waking hour of the day (of which there are more than there used to be), and as we're still in a resolution state of mind, we think a lot about what went wrong (and haven't come up with many answers).
Looking forward, or trying to, we recognize that my husband has been a fundraiser in the same city for 30 years and has a lot of friends in the Catholic community in this town. That means he really doesn't want to move -- the first step in fund-raising in friend-raising -- but, after 30 years, there aren't any positions locally at his level of qualification.
The loneliness I refer to has come from the sudden absence of some of our oldest friends. I am stunned that the phone doesn't ring, no emails or texts, just...crickets. I know it's a difficult situation to acknowledge to someone, just like death and illness, but absence is of no comfort at all. I feel as though we have the plague and our friends have headed for the hills for fear of catching it.
That, my friends, is why I am disclosing our hardship. I rely on you, my long-distance, but not runaway companions, to support me, encourage me, and most of all, pray for us.