13 February, 2011
Down but Out-of-Town!
We just found out that we will likely be taking a large pay cut due to legislation being proposed which will affect state workers. My husband works for the university system and without getting into politics, we are talking a yearly loss of nearly $5,500 for a position that is already paid about 30% less than the private sector (for which we are equally compensated by the nature of our additional benefits which have also been proposed to be reduced). Those is just the facts.
How did we celebrate this unfortunate proposed turn in our family affairs? We took a family "Get out of Dodge" vacation! We needed some time away from the daily doings and something to perk up our tired, winter spirits. We drove to Madison on Friday night and ate a late dinner at our favorite irish pub chain "Claddaugh". Beer was good, food was better and we laughed ourselves sleepy watching John Ross flirt with the couple next to us and dance to the live band. We checked into a beautiful mid-range hotel where they proceeded to upgrade us to a suite with a fridge and microwave for FREE. Yeah!
We woke on Saturday morning to a lovely, hot hotel breakfast and a swim in the pool which was equipped with a water play area just perfectly suited to our two small children. We went to lunch at another local favorite while we watched the Badger basketball team beat #1 Ohio State. Naps were in order and then we were off to drop the kids with their old nanny who lives downtown and offered to watch them so we could have a night out. All dressed up, we walked down State Street to a beautiful local and seasonal fine dining restaurant for a light meal of mussels and fresh pasta before attending a performance of the Madison Ballet. The second act of the ballet consisted of a local jazz artist and her band performing as the dancers interpretted. We had a lovely night's sleep and headed for home.
For my hubby, the whole situation mentioned above has left him (and by extension me) feeling powerless about our political life, our empolyment situation and our financial well-being. This seemingly insignificant trip gave us back a sense of having some input in our family life. More importantly it reminded us about what is most important in life and that is each other. We are not ultimately in control of our life, but must treat each other with love and compassion trusting that God's plans for us are for good and not evil.
***We didn't make the situation go away and we will keep fighting for our financial well-being. This is another one of those situations where a political leader is unable to serve the fullness of pro-life: both our moral values and our economic circumstances. It is not as clear cut as many make it out to be.