Sunday, September 17, 2017

I'm Still Around.. Sort of... Maybe...

Well, as anyone who reads this knows, I'm a school bus driver. 
It's fun going to different places with groups on charters and I find doing the school run enjoyable.

But this year, there's been a lot of stress.

Since I started, I've had one run.. I've been working there for over a year. I started April 29, 2015. So calendar years, I've been there for a year and a half.. School wise, a year and two months. 

This year, because of issues with a car seat not fitting in the style of bus I can drive, I had to give up my run. I built a rapport with the kids on my run. I didn't want to give it up, especially for something like that.. But, I'm on another run at the same school. If something happens that allows either the car seat to work in my bus, or the car seat gets eliminated by whatever means, I can have my run back.

So there's that..

Then there's a lack of money that the off-season brings for a bus driver. Most collect Employment Insurance, basically a program where the employee and employer pay into that the employee can collect from during layoff/lack of work. I, however, am on Welfare. As a result, I cannot collect EI.. 

Now, on Welfare, I report my earnings to the Social Services office here in Peterborough. They deduct what I make using a formula and I get a statement at the end of the month. Well, August... I got $6.75 I scrambled for rent.. I scrambled for food... The Dispatcher I liked left and a new one came in.. I owed for a charter.... 

September came... I got enough from OW for half my rent.. Then I got told they were deducting money from my pay to cover the charter I owed for, and it was happening over two pays... 
My last pay was $98..

Scrambled for half the rent.. Trying to get money for my bus pass.. Trying to get money for food.. Trying to get money to mail off the trade parcels I owe people...

I can't remember if it was last week or this week when I posted on Twitter that I wasn't in the mindset to write.. I want to explain that...

Because of everything right now, I'm feeling like a horrible failure of a person. I hate making people wait for their packages and I just feel that people remember these things and will decide to never trade with me again. I berate myself for things like that. 

I even had a trade partner offer to send me money for postage if it'd help.. It took me 20 minutes to write out that I would only feel comfortable accepting if I paid them back when I had money. 

I know there are a couple other bloggers out there in our circle that deal with anxiety and depression.. I don't know if they go through the same internal struggle that I've just put down.. I just feel like I needed to explain what's going on right now.. 

I get paid on the 22nd.. I'll be sending out trade parcels then.. I feel horrible for making everyone wait that long. It's one of those things where I don't even care if I get negative feedback for it. If anything that would reaffirm what I've been telling myself these past two weeks.. 

And now, Tim Johnson... Just because.. 


  1. Man, that sucks. I'm sorry you're going through such a stressful time. I worry about making ends meet too, but it sounds like you've got it a lot worse.

    Baseball cards are supposed to relieve stress, not add to it. I'm not worried at all if you can send a return package this week, this month, this year... don't even worry about it. If I sounded pushy about 50/50 its because one guy who only comments when I have a giveaway hasn't sent me anything. I know your story, Mike. And I'm not going to stop trading with you because of that. Sky-high US postal rates, maybe. ;)

    Hope things get better for you soon.

    1. Well, it will get better... I'm adjusting to the new run.. I don't like it, but I'm adjusting..
      I'll have regular money coming in again starting Friday.. July through the Start of September are Hell for bus drivers..

      It's funny.. The Postal Services wonder why volume is going down while making it more and more expensive for those who do use the service.

  2. I'm sorry to hear about all of this. I hope that better days will return soon! I also hope that those you've traded with understand.

  3. Sorry for the rough times. I think anyone you are trading with would be more than understandable given your situation. I have had a similar situation with someone else, told them not to work about it and I left it at that, no problem, no worries, and didn't hold it against them at all. I sent them something else just because a few months later as well. A year and a half later, they sent their package through which was nice, but not needed.

    I like to think the online community we are a part of are a bunch of understanding people who "get it".

    Hang in there and I am sure it'll get better for you over the next bit.

  4. Sorry to hear of your troubles. I wish I had something more helpful to offer.

  5. That's a big bummer, I hope things turn around soon!

    It always takes me awhile to send out packages but I've stopped worrying about how long it takes. I've realized that everyone has their lives and issues and you'd have to be a freak to mail out cards to people every few days. Who has that time?

    Don't Sweat It. (P.S.: I've got some cards to send you but it's gonna be a couple of weeks (or longer! Ha.)

    1. Things are getting better slowly.. I'm seeing some light at the end of the tunnel... And reasonably sure it's not an oncoming train.. lol
      It's mainly my anxiety that gets me in trouble with this.. I always feel like if I don't get things out right away people will stop trading with me, and think I'm horrible etc etc etc...

      So really that part is just unrealistic expectations of myself lol

  6. Collecting cards is suppose to be fun and not an extra thing to stress about. I'm way, way, way behind in sending care packages. And although I feel guilt... I try my best to remind myself that shipping them out late is much better than never. As a fellow blogger/collector, I personally would focus on yourself and paying for food/rent. That's way more important (in my humble opinion) then sending a trade package. I hope things get better for you soon.

    1. Indeed.. That was the focus.. I got the rent part figured out.. I'll be getting groceries tomorrow now that I have a paycheck again..

  7. Don't sweat the little things man. This community is an understanding bunch. Cards are suppose to be distractions from our normal day to day. I'm sure everyone would understand a little delay.

    Glad to hear you are getting adjust to your new route and that a steady check is coming in. Hope this is just the beginning of things turning around for you.

  8. I agree with everyone's comments here band just want to add in also my own expression that I hope things pick-up for up for you without too much more stress. I owe some good folks cards too but other life things have been in the way for about 2 months. And I miss looking at my cards, hunting for them and trading, too, as this community is the best thing I've found online just about ever. Like many I'd hate to think that your sending me cards was taking food off your plate or making rent late.