Sunday, December 12, 2010

Missing Jesus

Last night I realized that my nativity scene was missing. A further search indicated that some Disney snowglobes I used to collect were also nowhere and I realized that these things must have been left in the attic of the last house we rented (and yes, I had reminded someone to check the attic before we left) which has since been sold.

It made me really sad. I feel like I've lost so much in the last two years between losing a career, steady income, perfect credit, the house we built and the awesome job that I thought was going to be my saving grace. My confidence and self-esteem has really taken a hit after sending out months and months of professionally written, customized-for-each-job resumes and getting no response. I can't even get an interview for a waitressing job. It seems like I'm not in control of anything anymore, so losing things that were incredibly special to me and that I was seemingly in control of was just the straw that broke this sad camel's back.

And I cried. I haven't cried over anything in a long time but I did cry over my lost nativity.

"What'sa matter, my mama?" A concerned little kid asked, peering into my eyes.

"I'm just sad because I lost my nativity scene--you know, with the baby Jesus and his parents? I'll be okay."

He quietly evaluated me and this statement before running off to get his brother. They both re-entered the room.

"What's wrong?" Big Kid asked little kid, both standing solemnly at the end of my bed as I tried to wipe and blink away tears.

"She lose-ed her baby Jesus. And her Mary!"

"Your baby Jesus is gone, mom? Want us to help you find him?"

"No, hon. It's okay. I'm sorry you guys are seeing me be sad."

"Just put a new baby Jesus on your Christmas list, mom." I nodded that this was a good idea, knowing that our family's first nativity couldn't be replaced and the Disney things I had collected 16 years ago and carefully packed back into their original boxes for each move were long gone.

"You's want me to buy you a new baby Jesus, my mumum? I will buys you that. So you be's happy."

"We will both get you baby Jesuses, mom! That way you'll always have an extra baby Jesus around!"

"My mumum, my sweet wittle love. Don't be sad about Jesus, 'kay? Awww, I so sorry you losted your baby Jesus. So sorry!"

"Mom, I don't know how...but I'm going to collect as many baby Jesuses as I can find and give them to you. Okay? You'll have so many baby Jesuses! All different types! And Marys too, if you want."

Their sweetness made me want to cry even more because I'm so lucky to have them.

But I knew I had to stop crying before I ended up with 10,000 baby Jesuses.

20 comments:

The Mermaid Cottage said...

You've had a rough couple of years! I wonder if your nativity and Disney collection are still sitting in the attic of that house????? Send the new owners a little note explaining the situation and maybe they would allow you to take a quick peak into their attic. Never hurts to ask! If not, then Big and Little have the right idea...a new tradition of Jesuses (and Marys if you want them).

Now if you really want a good cry, come on up to Michigan where we have 8" of snow on the ground and anothere 4-7" predicted for today.

Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!

Bren said...

I would definitely try contacting the new owners and just asking them if you could take a peek! I moved a LOT as a kid and lost many things that same way so I say give it a try!!

Ellie Di said...

It really has been tough for you lately. I'd been reading along but never put all the events together as a string until now. To get a bit hippie-dippy on you: maybe you're not getting responses from jobs because it's better for you to be unemployed right now (cosmically speaking). And it sounds like you've got two wonderful little boys who just want to make you happy. <3

Ashley said...

Ellie, I do love staying home with them and they really love it too. There's definitely some truth in it being the best thing for our family right now. It's just nerve-wracking as far as the future goes and worrisome to go from being highly employable to unable to get a return phone call. Ugh.

Mr. Ashley is going to go over there and ask the new owners but they could have easily contacted the old owners who would have contacted us and I'm certain they've looked in their attic by now, so I don't hold out much hope. But maybe.

Mermaid, I died a little inside just reading about the snow. It was cold all week (40s-fuck that) and my resolve to never move even so much as a mile North has been strengthened. It's high 70s right now and that's just about right for winter for me. Supposed to be cold again next week and I will bitch about it every single day.

Ami said...

Have to agree; hopefully the new owners will be kind enough to at least look for you/allow a quick look for your special things. It sucks to lose things that mean so much to you. But, you are incredibly blessed by those 2 sweet little boys of yours. Their love for you brought tears to my eyes in this post.

Also, like Ellie, I have been reading along for the past couple of years, but not put it all together until now all that you have been through. It is quite a blow and a drastic change to your whole life, your plan, etc. It isn't just you - the economy has made a lot of highly employable people unemployable. Not that it's any easier to know you're not alone in it, but you're really not alone. I hope that you're able to enjoy this time in your life, without the worries for the future and things that are so easy to fall into.

Preppy Pink Crocodile said...

OMG this made me laugh so much! By the end of the month you will have your very own shrine to Jesus in every color and texture possible.

But why not go back to the house during the day and leave a note saying that you used to live there and left a box with xyz items in the attic. If they find it, you live close and would love to come pick them up. The worst that can happen is nothing. But if someone left stuff in my house that held sentimental value, I would certainly give it back to them. So if it is still there, there's a good chance they will gladly just give it all back to you this week!

The Lovely One said...

So sweet, so sad. Are they for sure gone forever? Could they be in your new basement/attic/garage? Or maybe you could go to the new owners of old house and beg them to let you look through the attic?

Rachel said...

We move all the time and although I've never lost anything in a move, I've had many scares. I know that panicked feeling. I really hope you or Mr. Ashley is able to give asking them a try. It's altogether possible someone saw a box in the attic but assumed someone else from their family had placed it there.

I read your post this morning and I've been debating all day about whether or not to say this and at the risk of giving unwanted advice, I'm still going to do it. Have you thought about going to school and getting a degree? I've read your blog for several years and was somehow under the impression you don't have one but if you do it might be a good time to pursue a graduate degree. There are affordable programs out there particularly for undergrads if you're willing to attend a community college (which can be done online). My husband is currently in grad school and last week I read a paper he wrote about the current unemployemnt situation in the U.S. A conservative estimate of the unemployment dispartity between those with and without college degrees is 5% vs. 10% although in some areas it is much higher.

From my own experience of working in HR, I know we had many positions that required a degree although we often didn't list this as a requirement. I know it sounds counterintuitive, but experience rarely trumped education and a graduate degree was worth up to a decade of experience. I'm not saying I agree with this practice but I do know it happens. In the current job market with employers receiving so many applications for each job, they have no choice but to institute parameters and highest level of education completed is often one of the first.

I'll end this by telling you something I know you already know: You are wealthy beyond measure to be the mom of two wonderful little boys. I have the degrees, I've traveled all over the world, and lived in 4 countries but I've also struggled with infertility for nearly 5 years and even held my premature daughter while she took her last breaths. I would trade places with you in a heartbeat.

I completely understand if you don't publish this. Moreover, I really hope I didn't offend you. I adore your blog!

Ashley said...

Hi Rachel! I hope you don't mind that I did publish this. I have looked back into going back to school, I just don't know for what or exactly how. It's on the "to do" list for when little kid starts school though.

In my smallish city it was always more of a "who you knew" sort of thing but everyone I know is in the wrong industries now (or just as down on their luck!) I'm only a few credits away from a Bachelor's in English but that seems pointless now (I thought I wanted to be a teacher but I was wrong.)

I am in the process of renewing my business license and can go back to my old real estate related job which is busy again, but that is not the long-term plan. I'm lucky to have it as a fall back, I just wish I didn't have to fall back.

I also do know how fortunate I am--ironically, this past year has been one of the best of my life. My kids are at great ages, they are going to wonderful schools, I love my wacky neighborhood, I am living the stay at home mom life that I always wanted. Money really isn't everything (but it took losing it all to realize that) and the old plenty of money having, working all of the time me would have chopped off a finger to be the Mario-playing, school-walking, playdate-having me.

The rational me knows that. The losing-my-shit me forgets. ;-)

I wish you the best of luck in your future endeavors and offer you hugs from one mom to another on your loss. Thank you for the good advice and the sharing of your experience.

the.bleach said...

I've been reading your blog for a few years and this is the first post that brought tears to my eyes.

Anonymous said...

Man, that sucks. My mom lost her job too, three years ago. She got some contract work, but that contract ended two weeks ago, and she's started the foreclosure process. Over the holidays.

I don't have any words of wisdom, cause I don't know how this is gonna turn out. But I do know it happens to everyone. She was an accountant dealt several hands of shit cards.

I'm just here to commiserate with you. Because sometimes you don't want to hear "there is always a silver lining..." :)

Lauren said...

Your kids are awesome. So sweet.

kootnygirl said...

What a heart-wrenching post. Your guys sound wonderful.

We have an extra baby Jesus lying around...I could send it to you (wink!)

Susie Q said...

Ashley,
I love your blog and your sweet little kids! This post definitely made me feel a little sick to my stomach though. I have collected Disney snowglobes since the mid 90s and I would be an absolute wreck if I ever lost any of them. Like you, I still have the original box all 70 or so of them came in. I've always put each one back in it's box to move it and I know what a process it can be. I really hope Mr. Ashley can get in touch with the new owners and your precious items still be in the attic. Please keep us updated!

Allison

Drew's Mom said...

Such sweet boys you have! I love their little hearts and want to cry right along with you. Sorry to hear about the loss of your nativity and Disney things...

Anonymous said...

I have friends with a whole light up plastic nativity. I sneak over every Christmas eve around 2 in the morning and "decorate" Jesus - with some NASCAR bedsheets and milk crate - if you have ever heard Larry the Cable Guy's tale of the nativity you will understand. I can steal him if you want... Kerry

Mommy Wis(h)dom said...

I cried through this whole post. Wow! What sweet boys you have.

I understand your pain because I feel like I am living your life about 8 months behind you, on the west coast.

Feels silly to say...Hang in there and hug those sweet boys whenever you can!

Anonymous said...

My partner and I really enjoyed reading this blog post, I was just itching to know do you trade featured posts? I am always trying to find someone to make trades with and merely thought I would ask.

Jackie said...

Another resume related comment.

You happen to be in the "lucky" position of having a very easily explainable gap in employment during the recession. I've heard a lot of employers state that they prefer to hire people that are currently working rather than people that are unemployed (forget for a second how dumb that sounds--just go with it).

Though you may not have explicitly decided to be a stay-at-home mom, you can easily explain the gap in your employment by chalking it up to staying at home. Make it seem like a choice vs. a necessity.

Re: going back to school. If you're only a few credits shy, it is 100% worth doing it. As the previous commenter noted, sometimes, a lack of degree is what makes the resume go in the "toss" pile-- regardless of the qualifications. My mom never finished her bachelors and always meant to go back...and now she's in her late 50s and laid off-- try being 58 with no bachelors degree! There were so many times she could have/should have gone back, but didn't because it was too much. If you just make the jump, it'll be over before you know it. I swear, this time next year, you could be done. Done!

Deb said...

My husband didn't look in our attic until about six months ago, and we've lived here for three years now. (Despite countless handymen being up there over the years.) Sadly, we found no baby Jesuses, but that doesn't mean the new owners won't!

Hugs, Ash.