On Feeling Abandoned

When I first quit my job in July, it was weird. I didn’t know what I was doing. I would just wake up in the morning, and feel like I didn’t have to go. I felt caught up in a fantasy land/nightmare I could easily wake up from. I also felt sometimes like something was urging me to quit. One morning I woke and was staring at the ceiling when suddenly I felt presented with the idea that everything I wanted was waiting for me if I quit: a book by me; my soul mate; a cute, chubby baby.

At first, I had this idea that God (or nature if you’re an atheist), and real (real) life were on my side. I figured they supported me in my belief that human life is too valuable to squander “working for the weekend,” or being a “slave to the money/ then you die.” I thought I might be rewarded for believing in something more than the Matrix, where money is valued above all else.

That first couple of months, I thought I’d win some money or my rich (and miserable) soul mate (he’s a doctor/king in America) would help me out, and I’d never have to work a job I hated again. I guess I hoped more than believed. Some days I cried, and prayed for God to help me rewrite my story, the story of a person who’d quit a job. America had defined that person as an outcast and a loser: People were shocked when I told them I was quitting without having another job. Two months ago, a former co-worker asked me sarcastically, “Did you find the happiness you were looking for?”

Five months since I quit, I finally feel like I’m writing what will be my memoir about my fight to be Somebody, not just a stereotype/follower. And (frown) I’m lookin half-heartedly for jobs simply because it’s required for me get a deferment on my student loan payments, and possibly to get some other benefits I won’t name.

Then today I saw some comments on another Web site, in which people were complaining about others getting food stamps. And I’m like, wow: Money is everything to Americans, and people should apparently do any kind of work to avoid getting government help, maybe even prostitution–they wouldn’t care. Why? People act SO UGLY all for money, a man-made creation that defines success in America more than helping others or following your dreams.

The site required people to put their full names to comment and the people commenting wouldn’t even do that. Wow.

It’s irritating because their “human beings are nothing” attitude is sticking with me (I’m very impressionable), and I’m totally feeling like a piece of crap. This attitude people have makes life seem like it’s worth nothing. And that people aren’t worth helping, even temporarily, like they can’t turn their lives around. And they wonder why people kill themselves when their money runs out. We teach people that being broke is the end of someone’s value, practically spitting on people who use government help.

Of course, my situation’s different from someone who’s lost his job. But I feel the only reason I am where I am right now is because all my life I bought into America’s standards that put marriage, and race and money ahead of character in determining someone’s value. I’m rebelling against a society where human life is just about pushing a rock up a hill and getting a break after five days. I’m not okay with that. Sorry. Whatever consequences there are, are better than suicide. Whether you jump off a cliff, work another lowly job, or go to school to become a nurse only because they make lots of money, you’re doing one thing: Pushing yourself to do something, that deep down, you’re pleading with yourself not to do.

NOTE: This post was previously titled “America: Jump Damn It” because I was upset when I wrote it. I changed it because I felt the title was unfair.


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