I try and not let circumstances affect me too much because I know that becoming anxious or worrying doesn’t really help the situation. My coping technique is usually to go out for a walk around the fields where I live and watch the birds, usually kites and skylarks. However, the past year or so has taken its toll and just lately, I have found it increasingly difficult to maintain a positive outlook. Having been unfairly dismissed in November 2019, I continue to seek employment and apply for administration and reception vacancies. I have updated my CV several times and write covering letters but unfortunately, I have not been successful to date.
I submitted my employment tribunal claim in January 2020, knowing the coming months were going to be a ‘bumpy ride’. In February 2020, I contracted Covid and fortunately, I recovered from it after about two weeks. I spent a couple of days ‘in bed’, but forced myself to go out to walk my Labrador and whilst doing so, made sure that I took in deep breaths of fresh air. I have never drunk so much in all my life during that time. No sooner had I finished one cup of tea; I needed another. I also noticed that considering I had drunk goodness knows how many cups of one drink or another, I did not need to go to the toilet! This lasted for a couple of days and thankfully by the end of the week, the symptoms started to subside. Having recovered from Covid, I continued applying for jobs and then on 23 March 2020, the UK went into lockdown. Over the summer months, people were furloughed or lost their jobs and finding employment became even more difficult.
Central heating boiler
During July, the employment tribunal claim was settled out of court and we had our boiler ‘serviced’ under our homecare plan (not British Gas). I was asked if we had experienced any problems with the boiler which I replied, ‘No’, but informed the engineer the pump seemed to be making more noise that usual. He adjusted the pump and carried out some other ‘tweaks’ on the central heating system. The engineer then gave me his card and told me to call him if we had any problems. I thought this was unusual at the time because we had a homecare plan. Anyway, to cut a very long story short, the boiler and heating system were never the same since the ‘service’ and it resulted in us having a new boiler installed.
Over three months later, on 24 November, we contacted British Gas and paid a deposit for a new boiler. I received a call saying they could install it on 21st and thought we had waited this long without any heating, what’s another three weeks. However, when I received the confirmation email, it was 21 January 2021, not December! Apparently, we were on the priority list but because we weren’t vulnerable, we would have to wait. I ended up cancelling British Gas because thankfully a friend had taken pity on me and told her husband who called in a favour from a plumber he knew. On 3 December, to all our relief, the plumber arrived and installed a new boiler.
Visit to the vets
The house had got so cold, we had to close the internal doors to try and heat up the rooms. However, our ten-year-old Lab was not used to this and caught his cheek on one of the doors. The next day his cheek had swollen up and it had started to go down until he knocked his head again and the swelling got worse. On Boxing Day evening, we were sat in the car park of the Emergency Vet for three hours! The following Wednesday, he had to have an operation to remove some teeth and luckily, he survived to ‘bark the tale’.
We were glad to see the back of 2020 and hoped that as we had dealt with three highly emotional events namely the employment tribunal, the boiler and the lastly the dog, 2021 would be a better year. However, to date, we have had to replace the radiator in our daughter’s car and last Saturday the fuel pump went on my car. To add to this, my husband’s car failed its MOT last year and needs replacing because it’s twenty years old but we had a new boiler instead!
The saying ‘what doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger’ is my new mantra! And I’m reading Ant Middleton’s book, ‘Zero Negativity’ to help me focus on that ‘things can only get better’.