Am I worthless?

Am I worthless? This question has plagued me again and again throughout my life, and it plagues me once more. I’m an intelligent guy. I’d like to think I’m not unattractive. I’m hard working and adaptable. So why is it my life seems to suck so much? From my love-hate relationship with my time in the military, my apparent inability to get so much as a date, and my current financial woes leaving me unable to pay my rent or buy food, I find myself asking the question again.

For years, I struggled with physical fitness while I was in the military. My self esteem was virtually nonexistent because I was constantly being told (though not in so many words) that I was a fatass, that I was all but worthless simply because of my PT scores. Why should that even matter to me? But it does matter, even now, probably because it apparently mattered so damned much to the people I respected while I was in the military. And when things got tight this summer while I was unemployed, I tried to reenlist into the Air National Guard… only to be told that I’m not eligible, because I’m a fatass that needs to lose 20 or 30 pounds. Why do I do these things to myself?

Oh, right. I was trying to find a way to pay my rent and, just maybe, get some food on my proverbial table. Because, despite applying for several dozen jobs, only one gave me a follow-up interview, and they didn’t hire me, either. I couldn’t even get a job picking up garbage at a theme park. What’s wrong with this picture?

So, why was I unemployed? Because the state of California didn’t have a budget at the end of the school year (three months later, they still don’t have one). Because the state didn’t have a budget, the school district laid off hundreds of teachers and every aide. I got rehired, at least – one of the lucky few – but at only 18.75 hours/week, keeping me safely below the threshold that requires the district to provide me with benefits. That’s right. In addition to being unable to pay my rent or buy food, I also no longer have health  insurance. Here’s hoping I don’t get sick…

Oh, right. I’m a fatass, so that makes me “more susceptible” to chronic illness, particularly later in life. Which, loathe as I am to admit it, is approaching faster than I’d like. Doesn’t mean I will get some problem, just means they think I might. And perception, apparently, is everything. Must be why I can’t get a date. No, scratch that, must be why I’ve had women literally laugh in my face when I’ve finally worked up some nerve to ask them out. A simple, “No, thanks,” apparently isn’t sufficient.

Now, by this point, you’re probably thinking, “geez, that sucks.” My self esteem is quickly approaching another historic low point in my life, so, yeah, it sucks. I’m not asking for money. I’m not asking for help, even. My pride is still strong enough that I don’t like doing that anyway. I’m just venting. Ranting. Raving. Shaking my fist and screaming out in impotent rage at the blithely unfair and uncaring universe. Besides, I have to hold on to the hope that it will get better, because without that hope, I might as well be out there on the street with the Vietnam vet I spoke with at the bus stop the other day who smelled like piss and was nursing what looked like a 2-liter of beer. (I brightened his day, at least… I could tell that nobody ever takes the time to just talk to him like a human being very often)

I’ve got a job again, so I’ll have some money coming in a few weeks. It’s not much, but it’s something. There’s a light at the end of the tunnel. Here’s hoping  it’s not an oncoming train.

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