And Here’s Where I Try Not to Panic…

We knew this day was coming, it was just a matter of time.  We got official word last week that the jig is up.


For the past five years Husband has been contracting with the military as a software engineer.  Each year his contract comes up for renewal and each year it gets renewed.  Except when it doesn’t.  So come the end of September we will basically be a zero income family.  I fear that this could be problematic and that we may end up living in a cardboard box or two under a bridge selling friendship bracelets to afford Cody’s physical therapy.  And for the record, I am not very good at making friendship bracelets.

But seriously we are not in true panic mode, well not yet anyway.  I am doing my best to look at this as a positive change, an adventure if you will.  I have full and complete confidence that Husband will find a job.  He is awesome at what he does, he has a great work ethic, and he is an all around kind and personable guy.  I trust him and, I hope this does not sound old fashioned or something, but I know he can and will take care of us, his family.

I also know that I am an asset to our family in the sense that while I have not been bringing in an income for the past five years, I could if need be.  I would rather be able to stay at home with the boys for another year or two, at least until Carter starts kindergarten.  I do not want to put either of the boys in daycare.  I am a control freak when it comes to being a mom.  The first year we had Cody, I worked full time and Husband worked out of the house so we had a neighbor/friend watch Cody for several hours a day a few times a week.  I remember crying when I found out she had given him baby food pears for the first time and that she, not me, got to see the look on his face as he tasted something new.   I hated that feeling that I was missing out on things, even the smallest things.  This must be how Husband feels when he goes off to work each day.  I think of this and try my best to tell him the details, the silly things, of our daily going-ons.

For now we talk of “the approaching state of destitution” or “the unemployment” (as if it is some horrible disfiguring disease) in whispers or mask it in humor so as not to alert the boys that change is afoot.  I have started using the words “adventure” and “change” in exciting tones to prepare them for what is up ahead.  And really, it will be an adventure.  I just have to keep telling myself that change is good.  We have time to plan and we have a rainy day the sky is falling cushion tucked away.  It will be ok.

My main concern is one of health care.  We need good health care, one that allows us unlimited visits to physical therapy and yearly haste MRI’s, visits to specific neurosurgeons and neurologists and will not completely break our bank when we land in the ER yet again for another seizure.  Right now we pay out the nose for our insurance, we are forced to meet our deductible two times a year because they have made it a habit to discontinue our plan mid-year and each time they restart the deductible (as well as increase the premium and decrease services.)  Don’t get me started.  But with our insurance, I know the lingo.  I know how to ask for, and receive out of network referrals for Cody’s medical needs.

We may move, perhaps even out of state.  The task of moving seems so completely daunting to me, so impossible.  There is the strong possibility of me having to go back to work sooner rather than later.  There is the need to find new schools, write new IEPs for both boys, find good physical, occupational, and speech therapists.  If we move out of state I will have to find new pediatric neurosurgeons and neurologists that I trust.  The list of items is long and scary.  But we are smart and brave and together.

Deep breath.  Say it with me “Change is good, life is an adventure, and everything will be just fine.”

About Shoes

I am an elementary school teacher, a former microbiologist, a mom to a herd of two boys, and a grilled cheese sandwich and beer connoisseur.
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34 Responses to And Here’s Where I Try Not to Panic…

  1. Jodi Stone says:

    Everything will be just fine. I truly believe the universe has a way of looking out for us so to speak and you are an asset to the family because of your education and background. Hang in there, change is good. 🙂

    • shoes says:

      Thanks. I really don’t like change but it is good to shake things up and see where things fall. I don’t have worries about us landing on our feet but I do worry about how the transition, whatever it may be, will affect the kids.

  2. Breathe in Breathe out…I’m praying shoes but while I’m praying can I pray that your hubby finds a job on this side of the mountains?I know healthcare is of the upmost concern for you guys so I am def keeping you in my prayers.Love you my friend

    • shoes says:

      The health care part of the puzzle is the key for us. If we can get that sorted out the rest will fall into place. I don’t see us ending up on the other side of the mountains (although it would be cool to be closer to you). If we find ourselves in a place where we have to move, we have our sights on Oregon.

  3. mimijk says:

    There are a lot of us sending good thoughts and prayers and deep breaths your way. I am confident though that all will be well – it’s your karma kiddo – your husband sounds like a gift to any employer. And this is going to be an adventure – perhaps a new chapter of fantastic opportunities, moments and experiences that might otherwise never have happened were it not for the fickle finger of government contracting..

    • shoes says:

      Thank you, I am feeling those good thoughts coming my way. It will be an adventure and it is past time to cut the ties with government contracting. Husband needs that creative piece in his daily work and it is very much lacking with his current position. We have hung on this long so that I could stay home with the boys, something we have all benefited from.

      • mimijk says:

        I’m sure it’s been great on all levels…and fingers crossed, it will be able to continue. Good things are coming dear one – I’m a believer in karma! 🙂

  4. jensine says:

    and think of all te new adventures and friends you’ll meet

  5. Christine says:

    Things have a way of working out. Do take care.

  6. My goodness, as if you needed something else on your plate! I’ll be sending good wishes your way!

  7. Hetterbell says:

    I think you’re right to try to view it as a new adventure. That can certainly take the sting out of fear. When I feel daunted by something I try to tell myself to face it in little bitesize pieces, or tiny steps, depending on which might be my favourite metaphor of the day! 😀 I hope it all works out as you’d like, and I really am confident that it will. Good luck and best wishes to you all. 🙂

    • shoes says:

      I am a list writer which is very much like breaking things down into pieces to make them seem less daunting. One step at a time while trying to have some fun along the way. We will be fine I just don’t like the uncertainty of it all.

      • Hetterbell says:

        I can appreciate that. This time last year I was really down worrying about uncertainty. But then certain things happened and there was so much to worry about I didn’t have time to worry anymore so I just stopped worrying and carried on! 😀 I hope that as the days go by the sting is going out of the initial surprise for you.

  8. The Waiting says:

    As a teacher, my hubs is basically a contract worker too. And it is stressful indeed. Our thoughts and prayers are going out to you 🙂

    • shoes says:

      Yeah, the teaching business is not what it used to be. The last couple years there have been whispers throughout Husband’s department about getting rid of all contractors so we knew this day was coming. It doesn’t make it any less stressful but at least we have had time to think it out and plan our next adventure.

  9. Unfortunately I know what this all about – best of luck to you and blessings

    • shoes says:

      I am sorry to hear you know first hand about this situation. I figure if I look at it in a positive way we can make the most of it and maybe even be better off for it.

  10. Definitely sending thoughts and prayers your way. I don’t deal well with uncertainty, so I can only imagine your stress. You have a great attitude and I hope things work out for the best!

    • shoes says:

      It is stressful when I look at it head on but if I think of it in manageable pieces and try to view it as an adventure then it seems less scary. I will do my best to make it all seem like one big adventure so the boys don’t freak out and in doing that it makes it feel like one to me too.

  11. ktlee says:

    Hang in there! It can all seem so daunting, but one little step at a time is all it takes. (And before you know it, you’ve covered more distance than you could have ever thought possible!) Sending happy thoughts your way! Wishing you peace during this time of unease and change.

    • shoes says:

      Thanks for the happy thoughts and wishes of peace. We will be alright. I just wish I knew where we will end up, but then if I knew that it would not be nearly the adventure, right?

  12. Sorry to hear about your situation. If you guys are thinking of New York, let me know. My wife is the HR director of a major corporation out here.

  13. It takes huge cojones to approach this sort of situation like you have.
    I’m also a gvt contractor and I know that my time may be up very soon, so I can relate to what you’re going through all too well. Not quite sure I’m gonna be able to handle it like you….
    Good luck!!!!

    • shoes says:

      I am putting on the attitude that it will be a fun adventure but it will also be hard and stressful. I don’t want to dwell on the negative. Whatever problems arise we will handle one at a time the best we can. Change can be good, that is what I keep telling myself.

  14. ShimonZ says:

    I am sure that this is really a difficult moment for you, and I hope you find consolation and strength in your friends who care for you, pray for you and wish you well. I can tell you, that I have had to face very bad news in my life, on more than one occasion… and usually, after I overcame the shock, I realized that the closing of one door, meant the opening of another… that I was hanging on too desperately to the known elements of life… and was scared of the unknown… but that it is all part of life… and that security is often an illusion. I send you and your family my very best wishes.

    • shoes says:

      It is difficult but it also feels right. We have never felt fully settled in our current situation. The town we live in is cute,the schools are great, and we have had the medical support team we really needed for Cody’s first difficult years, but it has never felt like home. You are very right about the hanging on to what we know, that illusion of security. Sometimes you have to let that go to find what you are looking for. And I think that we will. That is why I can make light of our situation to a degree. It is still stressful but it is the right thing.

  15. Nancy says:

    “Change is good, life is an adventure, and everything will be just fine.” Repeat. Change is also hard, but you will get through it…together. I hate change. I ache for you for what you may soon have to go through. I’m sending good vibes into the universe for you that your husband will find a good job before September and you will stay at home with your boys and everything will continue on with minimal change.

    • shoes says:

      I really don’t like change either but it is coming and I figure that if I treat it as a positive thing that maybe it will become one. I don’t want to go back to work yet and can not even fathom how that would work with our lives. September seems so far away but it really isn’t…

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