My work has been experiencing some major changes. The production floor is on reduced hours, 32 per week and we lost 30 employees due to terminations and a few early retirements. Some of the men had literally worked side by side in the late owner's garage before my company took off, forty years ago. Forty years of service, amazing, but still they were working and did not leave their lifelong career on their own volition.

Every couple of weeks we have a town hall meeting with the owners of our company, in front of the paint booth. It has become a slightly dreaded event due to the lay-offs that seem to happen hours before the scheduled meeting, and then what is imminently relayed to us during the meeting. I appreciate that we are kept informed and I do not believe they, the owners, are hiding information from their employees. But still, these town hall meetings have been pretty stressful.

Today we had an impromptu town hall meeting scheduled. Normally, these have been scheduled a few days in advance or told when our next one will be during a town hall meeting. Today we were told via email, mid-morning. I wasn't even sure if I should leave for lunch. What if I was going to be let go? I actually made a joke about this to Lou, like what if I wasn't there and they couldn't find me, would they still lay me off? I doubt they would just forget, I think they would probably just wait until I got back from lunch.

During today's town hall meeting we were told that we might go to a 24 hour work week for the shop floor. Not me, as my job has expanded to the point I could literally be at work for 24 hours straight and still not able to get it all finished. But salaried people, like myself, could soon be affected. Going forward there will be no sick time or personal pay, no 401k match, no profit sharing, and no more pension contribution. We will now be off the entire week after July 4th, additional day on Memorial weekend, two extra days for Easter, and possible periodic shutdowns. All days off will be either without pay or with remaing vacation pay, we can choose. Our pay structure is also being evaluated and we will be notified in April of the changes that will be made, but there are no more details that can be given regarding our change of pay for performance.

I work in a great, and normally very profitable market, that deals directly with oil, gas, and water. We have a strong international presence but this economy just sucks, everywhere. I know other people are dealing with worse, because at least I still have a job even though my husband doesn't. But the uncertainty of the future weighs heavily on me and fills me with anxiety over what is the best solution or direction for our family. It is during this time that I am so grateful I have a relationship with a God that cares, cares about the smallest little detail, and assurance that he loves me. How depressing would it be to not have someone to cry to, to ask why, to ask how, and to give peace and comfort when I need it.

I thought I would share here where my head has been and what my minisucle part of the world is coping with. This is what I am going through but this is not what I am. However, it is a part of my life and it does have a significant effect on me. When I was scared I went back and read the comments people left on The Nester's blog about how they were dealing with this economy. It made it all seem very doable and it was wonderful to read about other peoples challenges and triumphs. I think this is a prime example of why I love blogs, knowing I am not alone. I need my job but if it goes away it will all be okay....we will all be okay.
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2 Responses
  1. Jkhb Says:

    So sorry for all the stress, I'm so glad you are praying and talking to God about it. He is our ever present help in times of trouble. I so know what your going through, did you know my Dad was laid off twice in the 80's? It is tough but God will get you through! I will be praying for you.

  2. Carrie Says:

    I am sorry for all you have been going through.
    I will say that I am so glad you are back.
    I missed ya!