Friday, June 22, 2012

The Oprah Factor

You start to realize your desperation when you start scouring the Internet to find an address to write a letter to Oprah Winfrey, hoping that your sob story will be the one that will win out over millions that she hears every day and that, from the kindness of her multimillion dollar philanthropic heart, she will help in some way.
She is, after all, the richest woman in forever. And a handsome woman to boot.

As a brief history (pay attention, Oprah!) I used to work for a multi-billion dollar telecommunications company that won many J.D. Power & Associate awards for customer service. I worked there for about 5 years and then things started to... disintegrate. All of a sudden the business wasn't doing so hot, morale was crap, and the parent company clearly wanted out. My mental health started to struggle (on top of the fore-mentioned migraines) and I realized I was at serious risk of abusing a customer or having a flat-out trip-to-the-hospital panic attack. So, I jeopardized my job by just not going. I did this under the guise of a pending leave of absence but when those LOAs didn't go through, I got fired. That was the only way I knew I could survive; if I got fired, I could collect unemployment while I got my shit figured out. I talked to my doctor, a therapist, got diagnosed with bipolar... and here we are. I did what I had to do.

I live in an apartment in the upstairs of my aunt's house, which was my Nana's house. This is the house my mother and aunt grew up in, the house we had get-togethers in, Christmases in the back room, baby and wedding showers on the porch. It's a pretty sweet deal. For $600 I have everything included. But this is an old house, and oil is very expensive. My aunt is not able to keep up with the bills and oil despite my rent and working overtime (which her boss doesn't allow, so she sneaks it by filling in for people) and may have to sell the house. I am stressed the fuck out. She is too. We both had a cry at the dinner table when I came downstairs to settle rent for the month. I'm 32 years old and I don't want to move back in with my parents. I have a household full of things and 2 cats. I'm used to living by myself and having privacy. And I really thought the next time I'd move would be into my own house. No other landlord is going to give me the setup I have (paying weekly) on such a cheap basis. I even offered the $200 I have saved to finish my tattoo as emergency money for bills or oil.

I have been searching for a job for months. I want to work. I'm not one of those schlubs who is abusing the system and just living on unemployment. I want a job. I want to get out of the house on a daily basis and earn more money than the unemployment I get each week. But for my searching and applying, I have had no luck. I even had an employment agency look at my resume and tell me "we can't help you." This is an agency that was advertising a ton of administrative jobs but they looked at 6 years of call center experience and assume that's what I want. They didn't even give me a chance. I am so frustrated and I am exhausted and so tired of crying.

So dear Ms Oprah Winfrey, if you read this, a job and a winter's worth of oil would be awesome. This is how desperate I feel.

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