I wrote today that losing a job can have positives. I truly believe working and not working can both have positives depending on the circumstances. In a marriage or relationship it is important that the two involved weigh the pros and cons before just assuming that one is better than the other. Using us for an example:

I worked thirty years full time and retired with a good retirement package and, yes, I am drawing from it. We had three choices at the time, weighed each of them and made our decision based on facts as they were then. In hindsight, we may have done it differently, but not necessarily. Now that I have started the draw and drawn for all these years, if I were to stop now, I would pay a penalty on all that I have drawn to this point. Obviously if I went back to work full time we would be living at an even 'higher' standard and that is exactly what the average person thinks I should do.

But higher standard is not always better. Obviously if I am writing this we are not suffering greatly, but we also will NOT in any way shape or form be able to live at a reasonable standard once he retires as he has no retirement and life emergencies over the years ate up what we had put aside, again making decisions not hastily, but thought out. Again in hindsight, some we may have still not changed. My retirement funds due to 9-11 or mismanagement or ? are not expected to last until Social Security kicks in. The amount we will collect in Social Security would put us well under the poverty level. Selling our home in the middle of remodeling it years ago in a hurry to move for a better job took away what should have been a more secure future. That is just how it went down. Life and life decisions go up and down. The best laid plans of mice and men. . . .

Now, I know people reading: you, and you, maybe even you, are immediately coming to conclusions. How cool that your brain reacts that fast. We have jumped to many of the same conclusions, the obvious, "Marcia, get a job, now." The less obvious, "Marcia, get a job in the future, at least." And either of them could happen and most likely will at some point.

And I am the very person who would tell a younger person to get off their duff and go to work - if needed, if that is what would make their family eat. . . but I am also a firm believer that families with children need a parent either at home part time or full time, whether father or mother. Our son was not that lucky. The subject was not so talked about back then. Mothers worked. But, I worked hours so I could see him more than the average working parent -- and my mother was his babysitter when I couldn't be. In that sense we were all lucky. But that is a whole other subject isn't it. We are past the child rearing age, at least for us.

If I were to go to work now, this year, I would miss the opportunity to travel, often with no notice at all, with my husband on business. I would miss the opportunity to keep him company on those long drives, to take thousands of photos, to "make him stop for lunch", to see parts of the country I would never get the opportunity because our spare time is spent fixing up the house we bought that we want to downsize from.

I would also have to stay home alone while he is on those trips - and that is NOT happening. I did it twice, I am NOT doing it again. I can be mature and adult on most anything, but NOT that (and yet I know deep inside that if he died I would have to do it and would, but in a place with more people around, and I wouldn't like it, not one bit). So, as it stands right now, we are both, for the most part, willing to let me try to send things out to publishers and earn money that way and I have two more ideas I could do at home eventually, none that would recreate a good salary.

I know if I don't pull it off well, I will have to get back in the job market and 'take a job' away from someone else who needs it more, but that eventually I am the one who will need it more. So, if he gets a 'normal' job with normal hours, well then he can go back to acting and I will go back to work (willingly if it will mean he can go back to his dream - I have lived mine for the last several years), but for now, this year, our decision may make no sense to others, but we have done what I am suggesting you do, talk about it, weigh your decisions, make it work for you.

We did, we are downsizing, we don't want to spend much time at home anyway, we want to be out in the fresh air! I am focusing hard on my writing, he is continuing his current job for now.

And who knows: we may be driving across the country working in RV resorts and the like to pay for a place to live and food and little else; we may move to another country where he can make more in less time AND have enough vacation time to do something; we may both be working full time here and then some; we may eventually share a home with relatives.

We won't be panhandling or living at our son's, not as long as we still have brains that work.