I believe in miracles. I believe they didn’t just take place in the Middle East centuries ago, but that we still are blessed with them today, in our time. I believe we just need to keep our eyes open and look for the tender mercies that come our way each and every day, and we’ll see them. I know I do.
Ironically, at no time in my life did I see them more than during the events of 2009. Although I lost pretty much everything I had ever known (except my children), I also have probably never felt, in some ways, more blessed than I did in 2009. Yes, my life had not just been turned upside down, it had been ripped from me. But there were positive forces at work, too.
Soon after March 18, 2009, THE DAY–the day my spouse revealed he had been running a ponzi scheme, that everything we had was lost or seized by the government, that he would be going to prison, and that I would be left alone to raise and provide for our four children, etc… I had a thought.
It was this. “If I can just find a job and a place to live, I can handle everything else.”
It sort of became my mantra.
Like “The Little Engine Who Could,” who dared to attempt what others hadn’t and who kept herself going by encouraging, “I think I can, I think I can, I think I can,” I kept telling myself, “If I can just find a job and a place to live, I can handle everything else.” I repeated that over and over to myself. Maybe if I said it enough, it would turn out to be true! But I knew it would take a miracle.
Yes, I had a college degree. But I hadn’t worked full-time in approximately 18 years! Yes, I had taught piano to 32 students a week at my home studio, but I hadn’t done that for 16 years AND I needed medical insurance for my children. At that time, the economy was a disaster, people were losing their jobs, times were tight for everyone, and very qualified people with current experience were out of work. I couldn’t imagine who would hire ME in a time like 2009. Yes, it was going to take a miracle.
And, like pretty much every other good thing that has come to me and helped me get through my unexpected life, I got one.
I had a good friend who kept his eye open for jobs for me and helped me get my resume together. I had a cousin and a brother who also reviewed my resume. By the way, putting my resume together and trying to make sense of a life I’d lived for nearly 20 years and how it would translate to help me on my resume was an overwhelming challenge in the state of shock I was in. Thank goodness I had good men to help me!
And then less than one week after everything feel apart, I got a call from a friend. He said, “Andrea, I have been so worried about you. I have prayed and prayed for days about what I can do to help you. And it came to me to call someone we both know. I told him a little bit about you, I hope that’s ok, and he told me to have you call him. He has a job for you.”
I still remember where I was standing when I got that phone call. I was at a park with my three-year-old, in that cold, Rocky Mountain spring afternoon where it’s sunny and “warm,” yet an icy breeze blows. I was shivering as tears of gratitude streamed down my face. A job? Like that? It seemed too good to be true. Things like that just don’t happen in real life, unexpected or not.
I thought about calling, I was sort of afraid to call, I put it off a day or two wondering if I dared call…and then the man called me. “Didn’t so-and-so tell you to call me?” he asked. “Didn’t he tell you I have a job for you?” He even went above and beyond (because he is just that kind of a good man) to reassure a broken, shattered potential employee that he wasn’t doing her a favor. He told me he knew me, he knew what I could do, that someone with my background and training was exactly what he needed at his company, and that actually, I would be doing him a favor by coming to work for him.
Approximately one year ago today, I received my formal offer letter of employment.
I had a job. It was a miracle.
Now, if I could just find a place to live…I could handle everything else. Anything. But it was going to take a miracle too.