I got my social security statement in the mail today. My heart always skips a beat when I see the envelope. I always worry that my ex is using my social security number or trying to scam the government with my information, and I forget that they send this notice out every year telling you how much you would get if you were to retire.
It gives my income every year since I hit legal age.
The last time I made this amount was when I was nineteen. I make as much right now as I did twenty years ago. This is the most I have made in the past decade.
My hours worked are less. I have to take special needs kids to appointments and see them to the bus and I cannot put in more hours on the job.
My career was derailed. My ex harassed me so badly at my job that I couldn´t take the stress and quit. Then he convinced me to work for a friend of his, and the salary he promised never coalesced. I effectively flushed my career down the toilet ten years ago.
(My income the year before my career derailed was three times my current income, if that gives you an idea of the dramatic shift.)
I have not kept up with my field. The pertinent focus of my field has shifted from areas of my expertise onto East Asia. My sphere of reference is no longer relevant, and I never got any technical or managerial background to round out this gap.
I live, for my safety, in an area where I cannot be tracked by my ex. This means no big cities, and that means the jobs available in my area pay drastically less. This is how I live as a victim of violent crime who has been relocated for my safety from one state to another.
I do, however, make more than most in my current field. I do, however, have a job that is less stressful than my old career, and far less demanding. I do, however, get to take my kids to all the appointments they require.
Totally worth it.