Thursday, January 15, 2009

Why do things happen?

Heard the expression, it happens in threes? Ohmygod how true it turned out this week! Only it happened it fours! I can't help but wonder what's next?

As if the stinkin economy isn't bad enough. One of my co-workers suffered a heart attack at the age of thirty-six, another one was rushed to the hospital yesterday because she was having chest pains as well, and my dad called me last night to say he thinks he's very ill and dying. Okay, he's been saying that ever since my mom passed away. It's eventually going to come true. We all die. I'm not being flip about it, I love my step-dad but he's a little on the melodramatic side and he's never gotten over losing mom.

My daughter called me tonight, on her way home from work, crying because the company she's worked for the last seven years has told everyone no more bonuses! Now granted, you're not supposed to count on a bonus but when you've received one every month for seven years, well, you count on it damn it! We're talking in the neighborhood of a thousand dollars in a good month. That's a lot of money for a young couple with a baby.

I wanted to cry with her. I wanted to fix it for her. I wanted to reach through the darn phone and hug her. My daughter is a very strong individual and it takes a lot to make her cry. But she was so frustrated, angry and of course worried. So I spent half an hour telling her what she had to be thankful for and convincing her there are other folks out there who have it worse. At least she still has a job. And she has options.

I guess what angered her the most is that the company she works for actually showed a profit last year. It is hard to understand how they could stop the bonuses for their employees knowing how hard it is to make ends meet right now. I think they're doing what a lot of companies are doing and taking advantage of the economy. There aren't any jobs right now so they can pretty much do whatever they want. If you want to keep your job you can't say a thing but are forced to go along with whatever.

Bad timing.


Linda LaRoque said...

Tag, you're it, Debbie. Now it's your turn to do the tagging. Check out my blog for details.


Debbie Wallace said...

Ya caught me! LOL

Nancy Bristow said...

Debbie...Whether the economy is good or bad, companies have the same bottom line...always...the highest per centage of profit possible. The needs of those that get in the way of that simply don't matter. The sooner we recognize that fact the better we're able to deal.

In my 40 some years of working I saw this philosophy played out ad nauseam. I made it through four different lay-off's (reduction-in-force [R.I.F.'s], down-sizing...whatever you want to call it) in different industries...none of which had anything to do with the quality of my work.

It taught me to plan for the worse regarding my financial security and grateful many times over that I did. I use the term "financial security" loosely because there really is no such thing. What I mean is that I took the precautions that I could -- saving as much as possible; never carrying credit card debt; never counting on raises, promotions or bonuses and living at or below my means -- in preparation for that day that I might find, through no fault of my own, myself without a paycheck. All I can say is that I was very fortunate to have paid attention to my own wake-up call.

Employees who think they will never be caught in a down sizing are living in fantasy land. It never ever feels good when it happens but the impact will be somewhat less severe if one plans on it happening.

You are quite right about your daughter...this time she was lucky it was only the lost of a bonus. I hope she'll use this experience as her own wake-up call to her benefit in the future.

Maybe I'm preaching to the choir here but it's a subject that too many people don't take seriously enough...particularly younger ones...most are carrying so much credit card debt that it nearly puts me into cardiac arrest. Truly it's beyond my comprehension that people think they can get away with spending more than they earn and believe they'll never be held accountable.

...and she steps off her soap box....Nancy:)

Debbie Wallace said...

You're right on so many counts Nancy. My hubby is the same way with regard to carrying credit card debt and pays off our cards every month.

I think some things in life you have to experience for yourself before recognizing that wake up call. You can't tell kids anything and no matter how many times you remind them that you have more experience, etc. they just roll their eyes.

How did you get to be so smart? I'm not being cute, I'm serious. Although, I am cute, too:)

Nancy Bristow said...

Yeah Debbie, you are cute:)

In answer to your question about being smart. I don't know that I'd be considered "smart" but I've always possessed a great deal of common sense. I thought this was a trait that everyone had but have come to know that they don't. So, I have to consider it a gift. One that was passed on, I think, from my down-to-earth parents.

I learned early on that I was responsible for my decisions. If I screwed up, then it was up to me to correct it or try not to make the same mistake again or adjust to new insight gained by experience. I look to myself for answers to my own issues or direction as to what is in my best interest rather than blaming others for my mistakes or believing "others" know better than I do what's good for me. If I have questions, I do the research to come to the right solution for me.

To sum up my life, under my direction and I own it...good, bad or in between. I will not make a mark on this world but that's okay...I'm one of the ordinary and unknown among millions. It's enough that I'm important to my family and a few friends and so far, can rely on my own resources for my support....Nancy:)