We take so many things for granted in our daily lives. We don’t appreciate things until they are gone. Simple things like electricity, heat, even our vehicles.
After last year, when everything that could go wrong, was going wrong. It was one bad thing after another, after another. We have really had enough. So begins the tale of the past 15 months.
November 2013, our landlord informed us that our rent would be increased by $200 on January 1, 2014. We knew we could not afford that high of an increase in the rent so we chose to move. We found a ½ double home in a small town that we heard was not a bad area to live in. The rent would be $300 less than what we were currently paying. Great, we thought because then we could catch up on some things, pay off others and have some spending money. So we were supposed to move in the weekend after Christmas.
Wrong! The new landlord informed us that we could not move in until January 3, 2014. My husband picked up the moving truck in a snow storm. We loaded the truck in the snow storm. The people who said they would help us never showed up and were not answering our calls. The moving truck gets loaded and we were making good time. We start my SUV and the moving truck. We got all the kids into the SUV and my husband calls my cell phone to inform me that the moving trucks emergency brake is frozen and will not turn off. We get all the kids back into the house, and call the moving companies roadside assistance. We had to wait 4 hours for them to come and fix the truck. That night was also the night that the “polar vortex” that we kept getting all winter long began. We get to the new place and unload the truck in temperatures that were below 0.
The new landlord calls my husband to inform him that the furnace guy would be coming to explain some things about the new furnace. What a joke that was. The furnace was never properly installed. The automatic water feeder was never put on, so my husband had to manually fill it with water every other day. Also the washer machine drainage was not up to code and that he installed a drain on the opposite side of the basement as the water hook ups, but would be back in at the beginning of the next week to installed new water hook ups by the new drain. Neither the automatic water feed nor the water hookups were ever installed, and the landlord did not want to hear anything about it, because this guy was a family friend of hers.
Also in January, we get a letter from the department of motor vehicles stating that we had no car insurance on our SUV and that the license plate was being suspended. That was news to us. We were never informed by the insurance company that they stopped covering the SUV and no explanation of why. My husband’s hours at work were being cut back, and the cost of home heating oil between January and March. After the temperatures warmed up we noticed that the railing on the back porch was not even attached, it was just frozen on there all winter long.
Now we are in March. My husband job was cut along with everyone else in his department, just before our teen’s and preteen’s birthdays. So now we are just living off of my salary which is not a lot. Unemployment took over a month to start paying him. So I tried taking a higher paying job back in our home state of CT. Friends and family were letting me stay with them for the first few weeks, while I was actively looking for a place to move us to. The last place I was staying was with my in-laws who decided after 3 days to tell me I could not stay with them any longer. I had to resort to sleeping in my SUV & once or twice a week staying at motels which was costly. My husband was offered a job back in PA at an Amazon.com warehouse that he had to accept or he would lose his unemployment. As soon as he accepted the position the last week in April, I put in for a transfer to a nursing home back in PA that the company I worked for owned. I did not hear anything from them.
Between the costs of oil during the winter, me working over 300 miles away and staying in my truck or hotels, and paying all the bills and rent for our place in PA, we did not have the money for my car payment and they came and took the SUV. We knew that was happening and tried to come up with the money to keep it by selling things, it just didn’t work out for us like the first 5 months of the year. I had to quit my job in CT. Two weeks later the company recruiter in PA contacted me about the position I had put in over a month before to transfer to. It was too late. I was denied unemployment as well.
I applied to numerous places every day. On July 2, 2014 I get a call from Amazon.com saying that my husband was being taking to the hospital because he had a heart attack. Yes, you can have a heart attack at any age. I had to call around to get a ride to the hospital that he was being taken to. The hospital let him come home with me and we scheduled testing for him. After his testing he was allowed back to work, he was out of work for 2 weeks. The week he returned, he gets hurt because Amazon.com does not allow its employees to use forklifts, they have to use manual pallet jacks to move pallets from one end of the warehouse to the other. Most of the time these pallets weigh in at 100 lbs. Again he is out of work. They refused his workers compensation claim. We are now flat broke.
I obtained a position at a nursing home not far from where we lived. My husband also obtained an executive chef position at a local hotel. He started 2 days before me. Now we have the dilemma of only having 1 vehicle still and we both worked day shift. I was stuck finding rides to work and he would pick me up. We moved my oldest daughter in with my nephew in another school district because over the summer she informed us that the kids at school were severely terrorizing her. She started shaking and crying when she saw one of the kids at the grocery store.
We finally found a car for me in September. It needed just a little bit of work, but would get me back and forth to work and to the grocery store. Until I got pulled over by a cop who did not believe that I just purchased the car and still was within my time frame for getting it inspected, and he told me that my license was suspended and that he was taking my car, even though I said I can have my roadside assistance company come and tow it. Now my car is impounded and I have to pay to get it back along with a huge ticket. Now that is all taken care of. My husband obtained a 2nd full time job to try to get us out of the horrible rut we have been in for the past 9 months.
October is my youngest daughter’s birthday, and she get sick the week before with a high fever, so one of use needed to call off of work for the week to care for her. We both do not have any pto time because we were both still within our first 90 days on the job. We were able to give her a nice birthday weekend though. We got her a new Nabi tablet to replace the one she broke in March, and did some family fun things. Also, our horrible landlord took us to court trying to say we were not paying the rent. We decided enough was enough in that town and that we were moving.
November, we found a great place in the same town that we used to live in that is also in the same school district that our teen was going to. I started packing immediately, and we moved Thanksgiving weekend. We had some help this time which was great.
Everything was going great the first two weeks of December. Then my husband’s car breaks down. We took it to the repair specialist who says that everything looks good. I pay for the repair and tell him that we will pick up the vehicle after I pick up my husband from work at 10:00 pm. I took my daughter on a date to a safe movie theater 30 minutes away. Her sisters and I went to window shop at some stores. When I went to pick up my teen and her date, I noticed my battery light was on. I made it to my husband’s work, where my car died. Now his car is still at the repair shop and now we have no vehicle. My nephew brought my kids and myself home and my husband’s coworker took him to pick up his car. My car would not start after work a few days later and no one would jump-start my car even though I had jumper cables, finally after I started to cry someone came to my rescue. My husband fixed my car the next day.
The following week, my sister-in-law informed us we were no longer welcome for Christmas, to just stay home. We made arrangements with my family instead, and then she changes her mind. We went to my families. We had the trouble with ordering the tablet for my preteen from Wal*mart. Then 3 days before Christmas, my husband calls me at work to inform me that on his way to his 2nd job his oil pump went and his engine was done for. Christmas was good.
January 2015: My husband found a car that was cheap that we decided to purchase and then in a month or two would trade in for a new car. We purchased the vehicle and were bringing it home when it dies on the highway. Of course a cop is going to show up out of nowhere. He tries telling my husband that the car is stolen because we don’t have a bill of sale. The state we live in does not use a bill of sale for a car purchase. My husband got a ticket which we are going to fight. This was at 1:00 am. The car did not get towed to our house until 5:30 am even though the tow truck picked it up off the highway at 3:00 am.
Needless to say, we still are using 1 vehicle. My husband is extremely close to losing his 2nd job, because the people who give him rides from his first job to the second are not reliable and continuously make him late. I get up an hour early for work to take him to work and then I go to work. He is supposed to be at his second job before I get out of work and I cannot leave to bring him. I also do this on my days off, except on my days off I drive back up to his first job and bring him to the other.
We are both exhausted and cannot take any more of this bad luck streak that we have been on. We don’t know what to do anymore. Life keeps getting in the way of life. I know there are people out there that have it worse than us. I am grateful for the things that we have I do not know what we are going to do anymore.