Life

Looking for the Light at the End of the Tunnel

Written Thursday night

At this moment, I’m sitting in an empty, deserted office at my husband’s company. It’s 8:18 p.m. and I brought my laptop with me so I could work on another story for the NaNoWriMo challenge.

I came with Kevin because he asked me to. I came because I love him. And I could see he needed me. I’m not any help to him as far as his work, everything he does is alien to me, but I’m helping him by simply BEING here. It’s what married people do for one another.

He’s been extremely stressed, depressed and generally sad these past several weeks … and here’s why:

I’ve mentioned that Kevin’s company is shutting down. And they’re shutting down not because they were failing, but because they were succeeding.

In order to continue operations, they needed a loan, which at any other time, wouldn’t have been a problem obtaining. But the (stupid, asinine, irresponsible, debt-happy … I could go on) government felt it was necessary to smooth over the banks bad financial decisions and bailed them out by giving them an insane amount of money. But this spooked the banks so bad that they held on to that money and wouldn’t loan it out to people who needed it, like my husband’s company. So the bailout plan? Not only failed, it caused quite a few companies to close down – good, solid companies that didn’t deserve this to happen to them.

How’s that hope and change working out for ya? Because guess what? It didn’t work at all for us.

Anyway, I’m not spilling any secrets by telling you this, it’s all quite public. Since Kevin is the CFO of the company, he has to stick around to the bitter end. Gradually, over the past several weeks, they’ve been forced to let some people go. It’s been emotionally draining for Kevin because he liked these people and he enjoyed working with them and he felt bad for them, as if he somehow failed them in some way, though this series of unfortunate events had nothing to do with him and everything to do with our idiot government.

Anyway, he has had a mountain of paperwork to wade through and various hoops he’s had to jump through and a sea of lawyers to deal with and it’s all just building up inside him. He wants to do a good job, and he will, but there’s a lot riding on his shoulders and the man is only human.

I was pretty freaked out by all of this at first. When he told me what was going on, I was scared. We were losing our primary source of income. And though I can, and likely will, get a job, and I’m certain he’ll get another job later on down the road, it’s still … disconcerting to say the least. Our world has been shaken – along with millions of other people.

But now? Now I’m ready for it to be over with. I can see the toll it’s taking on Kevin and it kills me to see him like this. He’s losing sleep and work is never far from his mind. I often catch him staring off into space thinking about what needs to be done, what he has done, if it was done right … and on and on.

The poor man.

I’m ready to move on to the next chapter of our lives. And I know he’s ready. He’s ready to take some much deserved time off. He needs some time he can just sit back and think about … nothing, preferably. But I know that won’t happen because he’s just the kind of man who likes to stay busy.

Now, I’m sitting here, in this empty office, an office that someone used to occupy, I might add, and look around at all the empty cubicles and all the art on the wall that will soon be sold and it’s just a shell of its former glory. I remember walking in here and seeing all sorts of personal objects on desks – pictures of families, plants, jackets slung over chairs, bags of candy sitting next to computer monitors and now? Now all I see are empty business card holders and desk calendars dating back to June 2009 – the moment that time stood still for the individual that used to occupy this office.

And then there are the boxes. There are boxes everywhere.

It’s all so sad. So, so sad.

Kevin’s office is next to the office I’m currently using. And I can hear him in there, at 8:30 at night, making business calls to the SEC, trying to straighten out misunderstandings and confusing legal verbiage. I hear a completely different version of the man I married; I hear his intelligence, his determination and his weariness.

I can’t wait for this to be over for him.

ADDED at 7:30 Friday morning: I won’t pretend to know what’s going on, I’m simply not smart enough to grasp all of the filings and reports that Kevin has to do, but a mistake was made on one of the filings and Kevin had had to send it back. The company working on it is open 24 hours a day, so they would have the corrected version for him to approve at 2:00 in the morning.

2:00 A.M.

He finished up his work and we came home. And at two o’clock in the morning, he had to get up, check his email for the file (which arrived at 2:30) and approve it. Only the company got it wrong again and he had to send it back again. This went back and forth a few more times and finally, it was ready at 3:30 this morning.

Again, I don’t understand the urgency, something about it having to be filed by a certain time today, but my point is – the man is being worked to death right now. And he’s so tired. His eyes were red-rimmed and glassy this morning.

He has another busy day ahead of him today and then he has a gig at The New Key Largo tonight (bad timing!!). Things like this are always piling up for Kevin. It’s like the devil takes great pride in trying to knock him around.

But Kevin doesn’t allow it to happen. He just grits his teeth and pounds his way through the muck.

Dear God, let all of this be over soon.

Please.

UPDATED: Just read that the unemployment rate is now up to 10.2%. And yet, we’re told the economy is getting better.

We are just ONE story out of MILLIONS.

Is it 2012 yet?

3 thoughts on “Looking for the Light at the End of the Tunnel”

  1. My husband works for an international tax software company. After a hairy last year, in which there were lay-offs galore and fear about going under, things have turned around. Now, they’re a bit understaffed and definitely over-worked.

    My husband is working with a client on the other side of the world from us. They’re just beginning to work when we’re ready to go to bed. For the last 2 months, it’s not been unusual to hear his phone ding at 2 am and feel him get up, check his email and wait for a response.

    During these past two months, my husband has only gotten one full night of sleep a week, Saturday night to Sunday morning. Hopefully this project will be over soon and sleep can be had by all once again.

    I understand having a sleep-deprived, work stressed husband. It’s hard on the entire family.

    I’m wishing many full nights of sleep for you and Kevin soon too.

  2. 1171 days 1 hour 32 minutes to go!
    My wife heads the accounting dept. at Bass Pro and it’s very much the same. Its unbelievably sad that people, Family’s are waiting to see if they are the next pink slip recipient.
    Government sponsored ECONOMIC TERRORISM at it’s worst.
    Truly sorry for you and your husband, but not nearly as sorry as those politicians are going to feel in 2010 and beyond!

    Either make the tree good, and its fruit good; or make the tree bad, and its fruit bad; for the tree is known by its fruit.

    Matthew 12:33

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