I know it's been awhile since I've written, so I'll try to play a little catch up.
Back in January I was demoted at my job. Yep, D-E-M-O-T-E-D. Me. I couldn't believe it, but it happened. And with that demotion came an almost 60% pay decrease. It was devastating, like a bomb had been dropped on my life. Instantly I wanted to quit, but there was a big overhaul coming in March to the patent world. I didn't know what to do, but with the New Year came new work goals and a new partner to work with. I worked hard, met my goals and had a good time working with my new partner, but still my work status had no signs of changing. Work was swamped. Every company we had ties with wanted huge numbers of cases filed before the overhaul. I didn't want to leave my team during these desperate times, so I stuck it out again thinking that once we get through this difficult time then I will have proved to them that I am worthy of my job. No dice. I was working insane hours and only making as much as I did as a college intern. I was burnt out. After the America Invents Act went into effect I requested a 3 month leave of absence. I just wanted to take some time for myself, rest, and explore some new options. My request was denied, but I was given a two week vacation. I took the vacation and then put in my two weeks notice. Every part of me felt broken and beaten when I walked in to those doors. I just couldn't do it anymore. Honestly, I should have put in my two weeks notice when they gave me the initial demotion, but I just felt so strongly about leaving on a high note or making it work.
Around 18 weeks my savings were nearly depleted. Everyday I was starting to feel a little bit better. (The rumored magical second trimester did exist after all!) I finally felt good enough to start applying for jobs. The interviews have been coming in slowly, but I am at a point where I am revealing to the head hunters that I am pregnant. It's getting more difficult to hide by the day and my good conscience can't stomach the thought of pulling the wool over someones eyes. I've started to lose hope that I will ever land a direct hire position, so I am now hoping for a contract job. Though one agency told me that most companies would not take me for a 1 year position if I require 6 weeks of maternity leave and the best I could hope for is a 6 month position.
Now here I am at 21 weeks pregnant with only enough money left in my savings to pay for 1 more month of Cobra (my health insurance plan). I'm getting so desperate for work that I've applied to contract companies even just to get day labor. On Monday and Tuesday I have more interviews, so I hope something comes along for my quickly. Otherwise, I am at the point where I may need to resort to closing one of my retirement accounts, but that is only a temporary band-aid and not a real solution.