I hear people say that people who receive Centrelink are lazy. Hello, I want to work!

Name: Madeleine Rose
Dreams of:
Being a teacher

After a festive, blissful few weeks celebrating Christmas and New Years, I am able to finally relax and reflect. I was able to spend so much time with my family, who I barely got to see last year. I’m just so thankful that Victoria managed to get our second wave under control and that I was able to have some time completely unafraid to catch Covid.

Though with that being said, tribulations are still very much present in my life.

I’m still without a job, despite applying for what seems like hundreds of roles. That is an exaggeration; I must admit the real number is about 70. I need a job which can work with my schooling. This means I have applied for a lot of retail and hospitality jobs, but nowhere is hiring. Even the cafe I used to work at isn’t hiring because they don’t have the demand. Applying for these casual jobs is not an easy process anymore. Each job application requires a cover letter, then they either have questionnaires or a 20-minute long test. Plus it’s incredibly hard to find organisations or employers willing to hire someone without two years’ experience in that field. I only have a few months of being a barista on my resume – but how am I meant to get experience?

Am I supposed to volunteer for two years without getting money to live? I don’t know what to do. I don’t have anyone to “help” give me a foot in the door, or whatever the saying is. I have not received one email back, not one text or call stating if I have been rejected or been accepted to go for an interview. I feel like I’m constantly getting discouraged and whatever I do, I’m failing. It is so tempting just to quit trying to get a job. It would also be a lot less stressful. However I think of what the alternative, of not having a job, would mean and that thought is terrifying.

I hear people say constantly that people who receive Centrelink are lazy and want to bludge off the system and don’t want to work. Hello, I want to work! I want to get a job and contribute to society again, but what am I meant to do if nowhere will hire me?

Pre-Covid, I had a job and was studying at uni. Though it was tough and oftentimes exhausting, it felt great to know that I was being proactive. But now, I have nothing. Uni doesn’t start for another two months. How else am I able to chase my dreams?

During all this I have noticed something truly bizarre. My eyesight is extremely poor and I can barely see how I used it to. I think this is one of the side effects of lockdown no one predicted. I mean, staring at a TV screen, iPad screen and phone screen for nine months straight has made my eyesight so poor that I definitely need glasses. Which is another expense I cannot afford at the minute. I haven’t seen an optometrist to get tested, partly due to being afraid to see the damage done to my eyes, and also stupidly, I’m worried about the expensive bill that I will get from it. So now I have to deal with my constant headaches and watch as things become more blurred in the background.

I have also rapidly put on weight during lockdown. It is my own fault really. You would think that being at home 24/7 for nine months would give one time to work on their health, but that has not been the case for me. Not at all. I have ordered so much takeaway combined with not doing any exercise at all. This has definitely made me feel more incapable of doing the things that I used to before, like I’m struggling to walk to the bus stop or enjoying playing in the sand at the beach. Now more than ever before, I have to start prioritising my health, even if it inconveniences me.

So now my new year resolution for 2021 is to get a job and be healthier. Hopefully 2021 is the year I can stick to my goals.

Dreams Interrupted