I normally don't write deeply personal stuff on my blog. It's not because I don't want to, but frankly, I live a pretty dull life consisting of work and home. I don't date. I don't have many local friends, so I rarely go out with them. My life consists of work, including the full-time library job as well as writing, editing, and reading.
But everything changed last Thursday.
My dad was laid off from his job. He'd worked there for 37 years. His company was involved in defense (made night vision goggles and such), so with the lack of new defense contracts, they're doing massive lay offs. He's 57 and having to enter in the job search market for the first time since 1974. Yeah, big change. He's better off than most. After his severance pay ends, he'll take early retirement. Technically, he'll only lose $400 a month for the most part once September comes. He'd hope to work three more years, so he could get full-retirement, but these things happen.
My heart broke for him when he told me with tears in his eyes. I can't imagine how scary it must be for him. I know I'd be terrified if I was laid off from my job. It's something that defined him. Then, snap, poof, gone.
He's hoping to find a new job, mainly for the health insurance and to recoup his $400 a month. Despite having had a good job, the family still lives month-to-month on his paycheck. I'm now the only one with a full-time job in the house. Yes, I still live at home. Have you seen the salary of a full-time library assistant? Yeah, not much, and I make less than average. My soon-to-be 17-year old sister offered to get a job to help pay expenses. It may eventually come to that, but nothing will change much until September when his early retirement goes into effect.
He's better off than most in that situation.
Still, it's not ideal.
I'd be lying to say my push to self-publish Defying Gravity wasn't influenced by what happened. It was, not that I expect to get rich or anything, but every little bit helps, you know. And for the last six months, I've planned to self-pub something, so why not it?
We'll be fine.
Still, it sucks.