25 November 2009

24 Hours of Separation

When your kid calls and says "How high should a fever go before you go to the Emergency Room?" your heart skips a beat.

"How high is your fever?"
"Son, it's time to go to the hospital."

When he doesn't take your advice you think, "Okay, a fever of 103 could affect his judgment. He's 17 hours away by car, so driving to him is out of the question. What now?"
Thank God we have befriended some of his friends in Phoenix...
We called one of them and asked her to check on him, and she did. His fever broke and in four days he was well. But once again it was a reminder of the difficulty that comes with being separated by nearly 2000 miles.

The fascination of Phoenix wore off quickly for him.
When he came home for Thanksgiving last year he prayed for snow. When I arrived at the train station to pick him up his prayer was answered... not much snow, the sky was just "spitting". But the sky was gray, the temperature was hovering near 32 degrees, and it was odd seeing my son enjoy weather we hoped would soon pass.

He lost his full-time job (and his health insurance) a year ago. Three part-time jobs paid the bills and left him with a little discretionary income.
Then he lost one of the top income-producing part-time jobs. He started pounding the pavement, looking for another job... ANY job. The thought of our child, a college graduate and expert in his field, unable to get a job as "greeter" at a big-box store, was frustrating. In four months he used up his savings and was embarrassed when he had to ask for help to pay his bills. Now this is serious... time to start thinking about "Plan B".

Jobs are scarce everywhere, and they're not much better here than there.
I called friends.
Friends responded.
We spent most of the day yesterday pounding pavement searching, hearing "Maybe".
On the way home we stopped to visit with one last friend. There we heard not only, "When can you start?", but "You can live in my property across the street."

It's a job he's never done before. It won't pay much more than minimum wage. But, as I so often say these days, "I've been employed and I've been unemployed. Employed is better."
It's a start. He'll be two hours away. Then next time he has a fever of 103 his Mother and I will be able to jerk a knot in his butt.

God is in control.


The Old Man said...

Son is pretty much in same boat, laid off in July. Nothing happening yet, but he's only 250 miles away. And the Boss can yank a knot in his ass over the phone - he only had a fever of 101...

Turing word - "strop"

ddf said...

Parenting is hard. Doing it long distance is even harder.

cj said...

GB -

One niece graduated last May and hasn't been able to find anything. The other, a social worker who deals with developmentally challenged kids, works five hours away, in one of the biggest metropolitan areas in Michigan. I worry. A lot.

I'm glad your son is moving closer to home.


cary said...

Dangit - does this mean you won't be coming back to Phoenix any time soon?


Congratualtions to Bubba for getting the job, though. Don't get me wrong, it's just that the chances of sitting down with my favorite whirly pilot just got a lot thinner ...