The way I am now
It is the aftermath of the earthquakes that has worn me out. They only lasted for a short time, a bit like child birth, but the ongoing battle with the Earthquake Commission (EQC) to get some resolution is what has ground me down.
Here I am, on leave from work for the third time, owing to stress (earthquake) related crap.
After years of getting to the point where I was able to work again, I am now looking at reducing my hours. I don't want to do this - I love my job - but I cannot continue like this. I am so disappointed with myself for not being "resilient" enough. I'm so sick of being told how Cantabrians are so damn resilient. The idiots who say that do not go into the local mental hospital like I do and see how over worked the staff are, how there is not enough housing for at risk people, how the suicide rate has spiked.
I am told that there are others worse off than me... Well, each to their own individual pain, but I am so over not knowing if my home will be repaired or not. I cannot move forward until EQC make a decision. Three fucking years and they will still not either hand me over to FletcherEQR (the no bid government appointed construction firm), admit that I am over the cap (more than $10,000 to repair) so I can get my insurance company take over or pay me out.
I watch as red zoners are paid out and move on, green zoners get repairs or rebuilds and those of us in the blue zone wait. We are not bad enough to be paid out and too hard to repair.
And so I wait for EQC to decide what to do about my place. Time passes and my home becomes more degraded by the weather. Leaks in the bathroom wall, my drains clogging up because they are shattered, some may remember my sliding door falling off its runners from the compression and warping caused by my roof that is no longer properly supported. I applied for emergency repairs to keep the house going and have only been approved for the drains. How can I prove that the rest of the damage is earthquake related? My house wasn't fucked before the quakes, how come it is suddenly "wear and tear" now?
I got an earthquake advocate to help me with my case only to find that he was employed by one Government department to fight the Earthquake Commission which is another Government department!
What a mindfuck!
Portrait of me by Anthony Noble, 1997
- Apple iPhone 4