Succeeding by Surviving

Things aren’t awful, I keep saying. But, I wouldn’t get all silly and start calling them good either. Mostly, they’re stable. And stability feels good even if life is shit on paper.

The stove still hasn’t been replaced, but I have a plan to make that happen. The toaster oven has been doing a good job of picking up the slack.

The furnace is chugging along, for which I am profoundly grateful. I supplement with an electric space heater (safely) to avoid taxing the furnace. It’s got some issues, so I am treating it as gently as possible.

The plumbing situation is still vexing, but I am managing. Poorly some days, better others. I have a crudely drawn diagram of the issue that causes these problems courtesy of the previous residents, but I’m not certain of its accuracy. When finances permit, I want to get one of those cool plumbingĀ cameras inside the pipes and get a very clear picture of the problem and a plan to prevent its recurrence or to just fix the damned thing permanently. The luxuries of which I dream…

I’ve settled into the second job pretty well. I’m getting some hours, which is good. It’s another low-wage job so I sometimes have a difficult time being grateful for the meager earnings that I should celebrate on the days I work ten or twelve or fourteen hours combined between the two jobs. I’m holding my head high though. This is another rung in the ladder out of the Hellhole my abuser shoved me into. It took him years to destroy me; its going to take time to rebuild. I am Unwife, hear me grunt and force my way back up.

The job is easy and the only pressure I feel there is the pressure I put upon myself. I’ve been able to sneak my homework there and get some of that done, which is rather nice. My manager likes me and shows appreciation for my contributions. It’s a nice feeling. A respectable salary and benefits would be even better, but, hey, one thing at a time.

My first job has picked up. My boss cut my hours drastically heading toward Christmas. Then, two people quit and I’m taking up some of the slack from each of them. My originally slashed hours have doubled. In an average week, I work both jobs on one day and have roughly 1.5 days off. My family misses me, but they like that food I keep buying and those pesky utilities I keep paying. Heat – pshaw – who needs it?

I am struggling to keep up with school and my grades are suffering. My 4.0 GPA is history. I’ve decided to cut myself a little slack though. It’s not like I’m partying instead of studying. I’m working my ass off, cooking, doing all the extra things that being too broke to replace broken things forces me to do, helping my family heal from abuse, and managing full-time school. A couple of Cs aren’t the end of the world. Not this semester anyway.

In the spirit of moving forward and ever working toward the future, I bought a small greenhouse. I like to garden as cheaply as possible, but I did drop a few dollars in the hopes of having some extra food this winter. I dream of the year when I finally get my cold frames built, but this will do for now. I hope. I’ll let you know my progress. So far, the greenhouse is up. I need some time off of work to start seedlings.

I really do need a couple of days off. Not that I have any idea what I would do with myself if I had them.

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