Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Life is changing

Rather than focusing on my (lengthy) to do list today, I thought I would tackle a topic that I haven't done much thinking about. Well, actually I've thought a lot about it, but I don't think I've . . .processed it yet, if that makes sense.

When we move to California, I'll be quitting my job of 15 years. In addition to that massive change, it will be my first time to be unemployed since I got my drivers license. Yes, more than 20 years ago, but who's counting? ;-)  I worked full-time all through college, and part-time in high school. I've been paying my own way since I turned 18, and suddenly, that's all going to change. I have no idea what it's going to feel like not to have my own paycheck, but I'm guessing there will be a period of adjustment. :-)

I will, however, have a large emergency fund built, mostly to continue to pay for our vacation house until it gets sold. That money will also go towards my personal spending, etc. I'm hoping to have $30,000 in the fund when I give my notice, but it will be very close.

What's my plan with regard to employment? Well, I'm hoping to take a few months off - my initial thinking is three months - and then look for freelance work. In my ideal world, I could (mostly) work from home, work 30 hours/week so I don't need before/after school care, & continue to earn a solid paycheck. My skill set appears to be in high demand, so I'm hopeful that could work out. I plan to start researching freelance opportunities at the end of September, in order to give myself time to land something when I'm ready to work.

What do I plan to do with my new free time? :-) I have no idea! None at all. Okay, that's not exactly true. Here's what I'm thinking:
  • Spend more time with the kiddos. Given that they won't be going to after care, I'm excited about having them come directly home after school, which they've never done before.
  • Exercise regularly. I'm hoping to start running consistently.
  • Do yoga & pilates regularly, rebuilding my core strength.
  • Unpack, then repack for our move when temporary housing is over. Then unpack again once we find our (more) permanent spot.
  • Meet new friends.
  • Take the kids on play dates, etc as they get familiar with the area.
  • Deal with all relocation elements - reimbursements, signing us up for various things, finding doctors, etc.
  • Deal with our vacation house.
Questions for you. Have you/your spouse ever left a job without another one lined up? Was there a period of adjustment? What worked for you? I'm extremely excited, but nervous at the same time. :-)


  1. We moved 10 times in 16 years. I never had a job lined up. I liked reinventing myself.
    I took several years off, but kept fresh by reading and reearching while kids were in school. This will also give you the opportunity to simply trust that your family can make it on one paycheck.
    I have to ask...where is your "beach house"? We are looking in the Seattle area for a retiremnt home....

    1. It's actually on the Oregon coast - near Cannon Beach. Gorgeous, gorgeous little town.

    2. Manzanita? Love, love, love that little town.

    3. Well, let us know when you put it on the market!

  2. DH left the workforce 3 years ago and has been happily managing the homefront since. We are empty nesters, though, and like you, had plotted and planned ahead. As far as adjustment, the first year I heard anxiety-laced comments from him about not having a job or an income, but as time has passed he's settled down and realized we are not about to starve. As for me, I still have the occasional twinge of "my life is more stressful because I have to work outside the home" responses when he's complaining about something going on at home, but they are few and easy to suppress or reword into something much less snarky. Give yourself some time to adjust to the new surroundings; the bay area is a big place and it takes a bit of adjustment to find your way around.

  3. Sounds exciting and wonderfully relaxing (and hopefully stress-free!) for you! :) No... we've never left jobs without having one lined up. Could never afford that... hope you're able to enjoy it!

  4. I don't have any advice for you. The only time I didn't have a job lined up was when I got married and DH was in the army. I was actually bored (prior to being a mom) and couldn't wait to get a job to meet people in the new area. I tried making friends through my husbands coworkers and didn't have any success.
    This sounds a little pathetic but I would think I would lose a bit of my identity without my job.
    I actually think I would have trouble

  5. When I quit my job last June and we moved it was the first time since I was 18 that I didn't have my own paycheck coming in too. Hubby and I had saved up a nest egg to pay for our moving year/his startup company year. I was way tighter on the funds than he was. It was a learning curve. It was a good year as instead of mine and your money it was our money (this after 10 years of being together and now 8 years of marriage). It was really good for us as a couple. Now I am back to work part-time but the money is still ours, not mine or yours. Cheers!

  6. When we moved to CT, I didn't have a job, and technically, Hubby's transfer hadn't come through yet (he applied for a hardship transfer...aka, my wife is leaving and I have to go with her).

    Moved here, got a part time job at the grocery store, and applied as a temp. Got a temp job and they ended up hiring me full time. But moving here with no employment was scary.

    Hubby's transfer didn't come through for 3 more months, so he lived with his parents, and I was alone in CT.

  7. My daughter has needed a new rheumatologist each time she has transferred with the National Forest Service. She is now living in the Bay Area and has found a wonderful doctor at Stanford. I would be happy to get his name if you might be interested.

  8. I quit my job when I was pregnant with my oldest. DH received a promotion and a transfer, so we relocated ... I never planned on working after the baby was born, so it seemed silly & pointless to job hunt as a visibly pregnant person who had no intentions of keeping said job.

    After 15 months or so of not working, I started a part time job in my field. I worked with the same company for 10 years and quit last winter. I had no job lined up and told everyone I was going to wait a year before looking. It's been 18 months and I haven't seriously looked - but if I don't work again soon, it will seriously hamper my ability to get back into the market since my skills will be out of date.

    The hardest thing for me right now is that I have nothing to say when somebody asks me what I do for a living. I am not good at "owning" my SAHM status and find myself saying, "I used to ..."

  9. If we move, I would be the one without a job too. Same timing as you -- 15 years in my career. I don't know how I feel about being "dependent" on my husband until I find something. We've talked about possibilities of a second career for me, an opportunity to do something totally different. What makes me nervous is not being as "diversified" as a couple financially. Have a great time this weekend!