There is an elephant in the room.
Not everybody who learns that we are the latest victims of the economic downturn is comfortable talking about it, much less acknowledging it. Instead, they do this awkward dance to avoid the topic. They concern themselves with relatively small and irrelevant matters instead of addressing the big looming one...the lay off. And in the process, it becomes much bigger than it actually is.
So I'm doing a public service announcement: don't be afraid to talk about it. Repeat after me...sorry to hear about the job, good luck finding a new one. Done. You don't have to fix the situation, simply acknowledge it. We promise not to drag you into an ugly "life sucks" conversation. Getting laid off is certainly not the worst thing that has happened to us; we are looking at it as a doorway to new opportunities. (How about me getting all Dr Phil-like, huh?). End of public service announcement.
I will add that most people have gone above and beyond the call of friendship duty. Last week a friend showed up at our door with homemade chicken soup. It warmed our hearts and warmed our tummies. That same day my sister (who does not cook) whipped up a batch of muffins and delivered them fresh from the oven. We've received cards and calls and e-mails...suffice it to say, my husband is feeling the love.
And then there's me who can't seem to walk into the house without shouting up the stairs, "Hey honey, I'm home...any job offers?" And each time I do it, I get a chuckle out of him. Swear. I always tell him he's lucky that I'm so funny, but the truth of the matter is, I'm lucky that he's such an easy audience.
Sure, there might come a day when he throws a shoe down the stairs or throws me down the stairs, but until that happens, we're going to continue to talk about it and laugh about it (and occasionally cry about it). But please, don't be afraid to join us...we don't bite.