a bench with a view

a bench with a view

Thursday, March 22, 2012

The Next Step

Everyone knows we moved down here last January to take over hubby's parents' home since they were in assisted living, plus to help his brother with their care plus to give hubby opportunity to spend more time with his parents. Everyone knows he quit his very nicely paid job in order to do so and we made major cuts in our spending habits and by the grace of God every single need and then some were met over the intervening months. Everyone knows that from day one I wasn't happy about the move, but did go along with it.

So now we are down here for close to 15 months and the purpose that brought us down here is no longer that purpose. Sadly, both of hubby's parents passed. And while it is still nice that hubby is close in location to his brother, as the affairs of the estate continue to get settled, his brother really doesn't "need" him like he "needed" him last year when there were so many overwhelming things going on.

So we are faced with this dilemma of what to do for our next step. I feel we need to take a next step, I just don't know what that next step is. I've been praying about it.

What we do know is this:

Almost since we moved down here, hubby has been looking for a job and diligently filling out applications which has only yielded him one interview in 14 months. So I'm wondering, should we take the focus off him looking for jobs in his previous field and direct it somewhere else because obviously this particular plan is not working. He is close to 60 (one year shy of it) and his years of experience, while beneficial for some things, is "killing" him for the jobs he's applying for, yet the only ones out there. He would be content to do something simple without the stress of things yet he can't convey that to potential employers that he's not out to steal anyone else's job because he never gets a chance to get called for an interview.

He's been trying to build up a teaching guitar business and that has been rocky at best. There are good months and bad months. Its all based on the economy and everyone knows how that is going. Music lessons are a disposable commodity compared to paying the mortgage or putting food on the table. Its not the best win-win situation.

So what are our options?

He could retire and say "okay, I'm done with the rat race". And we could make it work until he could take early retirement with Social Security at age 62 at a reduced rate. But he doesn't really want to be officially retired. He still wants to work for a few more years.

He could go back to school and get retrained for something else. But what? He's thinking about, I'm praying about it.

Like I said before, I know we need to take a next step, even if we just agree to wait and talk about the next step a few months from now. But nothing is working that we've been trying so far. Maybe it is a lesson in patience.  I don't know. I just know I feel stalled right now.

Then there's the thing. Do we want to stay in this house? Its not the house either one of us would have picked out with the design. So do we sell it and find what we want? And where would that be and how can we think about taking on more debt if he is not working steadily? Do we want to stay in the area? It is nice to be closer to family but honestly we don't see family a lot so is that a consideration down the road? The weather is "perfect" here and I can't imagine moving some place cold with snow where we would have to worry about slipping on ice or shoveling snow.

So, so many things on the table. So many considerations.

I just feel we need to take that next step........

whatever it is.........

31 comments:

Toriz said...

Good luck; whatever the next step is!

Shelly said...

That is much to consider. You all are in my prayers as you seek wisdom and peace on that next step.

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

You do have a lot to consider and many decisions to make. I've always thought that when the answers are not coming it is time to wait. Praying helps and eventually the answers do come. Sometimes we almost miss them in our busyness of searching for them. I'll join you in praying for the answers you are seeking.

Debbie V. said...

I totally get this. My husband (now age 60) was laid off from a 20-year-job in March 2009 and finally was hired on part-time in Feb 2011. He may have had one or two interviews in that entire time. I work full-time as an office assistant at a nearby university and am the main bread-winner. It's a change for sure. He is also just hoping to make it till 62 and hoping I will continue to be employed to provide the health insurance (he's type 2 diabetes).
Trust the Lord - he will bring you through this uncertain situation.

Debbie V. said...

I forgot to mention - my husband was employed for a large company making great money (for a HS grad) and is now working in an auto parts store for just over minimum wage. Still - he's happy with it. I think your husband will be happy if he can just find something similar.

Living Life said...

You definitely have alot of things to figure out. I say take it one day at a time, put your faith and trust in God's hands. He knows the plans He has for you. Continue praying...it will all work out eventually.

Jeanie said...

You have had so much going on in recent months it might be a good idea to sit back and wait a bit before making a big change. The good thing that I see is that you have so many new options open to you now.

Seriously Though said...

I feel this. Transitions without direction. I know so many in similar situations due to their age & lack of jobs like we used to have in the 80's & 90's. Plus, I totally get the "home" thing. I'm praying right now. I can really understand these decisions. I know He is faithful to lead and guide you. It will be exciting to hear what that next step will be.

Lynda said...

The good news about all of this is you are open to wherever and whatever the Lord leads you to do. You have demonstrated that already this past year plus a few months. It is good to be willing to change but a person does get to the point as you all are - - - that you feel like you are wandering in the desert and someone has wiped away the roads - - - so you really don't know the direction to take. Hang in there - - stay faithful - - - HE will bless you abundantly at some point - - hopefully soon. You are smart not to incur any more debt - - so I would keep the focus there, too. Even though the house is not your first pick, if it's in the budget - - stay with it a while longer.
P.S. If there is any extra time in your hubby's days, could he do some volunteer work in a field that interests him? That often leads to a job.

Sharon said...

You were lead to this place in your lives, I'm sure He will show you the way to go or do next, you just have to be patient and listen.

XXX

Jane said...

I agree with Sharon: God puts us where He wants us to be. There is always a reason. This economy is rough and more and more people have to work well in to their 60's. But your faith is strong and will get you through this leg of your journey.I'll be praying for you too.

Chatty Crone said...

You are in a place I call God Waiting Room - I know because I have been there a lot!

Eventually I would retire at 62 because you don;t know if it will be there when you are 65 - you can still earn a little money.

But what to do until then. I'll be praying.

gracies tough journey said...

You and your husband are in my prayers.

RoeH said...

One of my dreams in life if I ever got some $$$$ is to buy a modest RV and roll around America. So many things to see. I was 'pushed out' of my job at age 60. It was so obvious and I couldn't do a thing about it. I tried the union thing and they wereabsolutely no help. Sure glad I paid that 200 bucks a year. Eventually I had an almost breakdown which is what bossywoman wanted and I just quit. Took retirement and then had to do early at 62 which I sure wish I could've waited to 65 for. I learned two things: My blood pressure went down next to none and I'm quite enjoying my life more...and I despise women administrators. They are a total power trip. :)

Autumn said...

That's GOT to be SO hard! I hope you find direction soon.

Deanna said...

Hi Betty. When you commented on my blog the other day, I thought "where has she been and why hasn't she been posting!" For some reason your blog quit showing up on my blog roll. I've been missing you!

I know what you mean about how difficult it is to I figure out what to do at our age (I'll be 60 in 2 months). We asked ourselves, what do we WANT to do and headed that direction. I WANTED to give back and yet subsidize our retirement income some, so I found a job at church where I feel good about things. Hubby is a people person. So he found a job greeting people at a funeral home. He absolutely loves it. Neither job is full time, but it subsidizes our income enough that we can live comfortably.

I'll pray that God gives you some guidance. Best of luck to two special people.

Deanna

Betty WSch. said...

I can understand your feelings. But I think you shouldn´t do anything with haste. I´m sure you won´t. You will find your new way, just be quiet and listen (harder done, than said I know).
i will keep you in my prayers!

JosephAlsarraf said...

I know how he feels. Finding a job is hard and getting an interview is even harder. Maybe he should try something else, like work in a music store or, something. Maybe he could become a music teacher at a school if he likes to teach people music.

LOL! If I were gonna move i'd definitely choose the one with the most snow! : )

Rita said...

When in doubt, do nothing.
Pray, sit back, listen closely, and the way will become clear.
It's times like this that patience can be difficult. It will sort itself out. :)

SweetMarie said...

We are going through a decision making time as well. It's somtimes so difficult to know where we should apply our energy and time. I continue to pray and belive it will work out. And I continue to make pros and cons lists. I know it will come to you. I wish you peace and beautiful days!

Renegades said...

Honestly you won't know if you made the right decision until after you've made it.

Change is hard. Change is scarey. Yet sometimes it turns out to be for the better.

May God guide you in the right direction.

Robyn :) said...

Move out to Kansas and I'll take guitar lessons!! LOL.

It will all work out :)

jack69 said...

Ahhhh Sweet lady, those decisions will come with time. Yep, I know, it is rough.
Just a little thought, try as you are, if no luck, retire early and continue to do the music teaching. It is obviously something he loves. It is always nice to do something you like!
Love fro this side of the USA

Tami said...

I know from experience, these kinds of questions are so hard. You are doing all the right things - praying and keeping your eyes and hearts open for whatever new opportunity God may offer.

Wish I had a quick answer for you, but hope it helps to know that others care and are praying along with you.

Martha said...

Hi Betty! I'm so excited to see you are back to blogging. I just caught up on the last few posts that I had missed. Boy do I ever know how you feel about being consumed by the house and estate issues. I finally just had to take a break from it all too and focus on myself for awhile. My focus has been on health and fitness with bits of blogging thrown in.
I am also planning a reopening of my blog Seaside Simplicity this weekend but changing it to my main blog instead of a food blog - it's a little weird that we once again seem to be going through and doing similar things!
Glad to hear all is well in the grand scheme of things. I hope your prayers about the next steps to take will be answered soon.
Hugs, Martha

Debby@Just Breathe said...

Those decisions are huge. I will pray that God gives you all the answers you are looking for. Change is never easy but I don't see why you would want to stay in a house you don't really love! On the other hand it's not the best time to sell either. ((HUGS))

Sharon said...

Oh Betty - I get this dilemma. You've had quite a journey over the last several months - and yes, patience would be the word that I would describe as the lesson you've learned.

I will pray for you and your husband as you mull over all these options and decisions. My husband and I have recently made a HUGE decision - and it's going to change a lot of things for us. But, I feel God's hand on us as we begin a new journey.

I know that God will make His perfect way clear to you, too. One thing I know is that you have such strong faith.

He will meet you with answers.

GOD BLESS!

TICKLEBEAR said...

I am myself in a difficult situation and I can smell a transition from here...
This said, I don't know what his field of expertise is, but has he tried applying for customer services for companies such as banks/investments, or telecommunications, if he is somewhat knowledgeable in those things. A mature voice can be reassuring to some people when they deal with a situation. I know I personally get annoyed when I sense I'm speaking to someone claiming to know it all when his seat is still hot from the school bench... I don't know how it pays in the USA, but here, it is "reasonably" paid, definitely more than minimum wages.
What is YOUR minimum wages?...

As far as location goes, you enjoy the weather? good!! now either think of remodeling the house, or finding something that better suits your tastes/needs. In due times.
:)~
HUGZ

Intense Guy said...

I've no wisdom, ideas or suggestions - the only thing I can think of that is close in my experience was my dad had hired an older fellow once to be a part-time truck driver for his business. It worked out really well, the man was careful, clean, and kept nice records, and rarely got lost.

In the end, I think Rita has the perfect advise... sit on the bench, clear your mind... and let it be filled with thoughts from another place.

Hollie said...

Praying you get your answer soon! Bless your sweet hearts!

The Brown Recluse said...

Too bad he can't find a position as a worship leader in a church or something...

It's always a little confusing when you don't have a clear path, isn't it? You're doing it right by praying about it all. I'm pretty sure I wouldn't be moving until he had a steady job...I'm not that brave!!

What ever it is that y'all decide to do, I know you'll be fine.