When I first became unemployed, I kept my routines together, getting up around the beginning of office hours, keeping in touch, chasing the leads, applying for jobs, making sure that nothing interfered with my job hunting.
Just over a year later, I find that while the job hunting remains constant, it is sublimated to the things that I can actually achieve to validate myself as something aside from an eat-sleep-idle engine that produces nothing, does nothing and sees less. I am always available for job opportunities and submit applications every day that I spend more than an hour in front of my computer (six days a week). But my attention to the time and the days has become numbed. There really is no differentiation between them unless I have an appointment of some kind. I thought that this was not a good thing, but have become reconciled to the fact that it is a symptom of my situation and not unusual for those in my position. So I keep odd hours and I write while I have a surplus of and the luxury of the one thing that the working man has not: time.
In my first year of unemployment, I have done much that I am pleased with, done a few things I am proud of and become increasingly disenchanted with the employment market and the debt assistance market. Recruitment companies have proven to be craven and self-seeking with the exception of two out of the hundred I deal with. Debt management and such like are laughable. The moment they discover I have no job (and thus offer them no chance for profit) their glowing offers of help vanish faster than my weekly stipend from the government. I have looked into part-time work but have been told that anything I earn will be deducted from that stipend. How does this help me? I am not living, this is existing.
But frighteningly, I now know without question that I can fall much further. The depths of destitution are nowhere near my hallowed state, no matter how far I am from where I was two years ago.
The long road down is not done with me yet, it seems.
But I will carry on. Despair is something I have for the course that society and the world is taking, not for my condition. My dreams, wishes and hopes are not denied me, they are not closed to me, they have not abandoned me. They are all possible and waiting for that moment when a convergence of timing, effort and luck make one or more of them attainable.