57 and not sure what the future holds

Hi. This is going to be a long post but need somewhere to vent. My name is Carrie and I am 57. I am just dismayed at how hard it is to get a decent job, let alone a decent interview. I am working right now as a caregiver for $10.65 an hour. I am lucky if I get 18 hours a week with the company I am with. I've been with them six months and took the job as I desperately needed some income after being unemployed for 5 months and not finding a job. I formerly worked for a company for only 4 months and 150 of us were given a little box of our possessions after showing up for work on a Monday.

It took me 3.5 months to find that job! Anyway, my job now is awful. I can hardly afford to pay rent or even put gas in my car. The stress of worrying about lack of money and looking for a better job is now over the top and has affected my physical health which I am getting medical help with. I am single and have no backup funds left.

Background is 15 years in legal field as a secretary and paralegal. Then my son was diagnosed with autism and I quit working. Stayed home and started an at-home business and ran that for 15 years. Economy tanked and so did it. During that time I got engaged and fiancee was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer. I was his caregiver for 2.5 years until he died.

I have had my resume done 4 times in the last 1.5 years by professional resume writers. Everyone counseled me differently - remove this, add that, try to hide your age, don't tell anyone about your son or that you were a caregiver for your fiancee, don't put your schooling re legal field as it dates you. Age was discussed with a placement agency guy and he actually told me that yes, there is alot of age discrimination.

I am at the point where i am wandering around in confusion here. I wake up at night having panic attacks with dreams of being homeless. I feel I have so much to offer an employer but I cannot do telemarketing/phone sales. I hate looking for work on the job sites as everything dumps into a black hole it seems.

BTW I wanted to go back into the legal field, but it's been 23 years since I worked in that field and I don't see that happening. I also don't have a real network of people so I feel like I am on my own. I am at a loss as to what direction I should go in. Need money to live in this world.

I am tightly holding on to my faith but some days are pretty tough to keep that faith. Sorry for the long rant. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

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