Friday, March 13, 2009

One would think my life came to a sudden standstill once a new president was elected. It's as if I dropped off the planet. Not so! I'm still very much here, treading water, trying to stay afloat in the current economic state of affairs. I am not as fortunate as some but more so than many. Not having a great deal of money to begin with, nor a fine, fat nest egg in which I was planning to curl up in upon retirement has spared me much worry and grief over the current state of economic affairs. What does worry me is the fact that I very much fear I will never reach that holy grail of high-end middle age; that being the luxury to retire but will instead have to carry on until I drop dead. This really worries me.

Recent history tells me that we were going though much the same sort of thing back in the early eighties but I don't remember it being quite this severe. I was living an entirely different life back then and I don't recall that I was affected much by it. In fact, I was staying at home with my little girl in those days doing those things that I wanted to do: namely, all the things that were all I ever wanted to do in my life. Stay home, be a homemaker, make dinner, tend to my home, be home when my child returned from school, etc. My, doesn't that sound terribly unambitious and lame and boring. However, there's a lot more to being a woman who stays home to run the household and manage family affairs than you might think. But, as usual, I digress.

Work has been alternately difficult, challenging and rewarding. My hours have been cut by a half hour each day. This works out to two and a half hours a week but my net paycheck reflects the pinch bimonthly. The work has become more difficult, more demanding with less time to get it done. There is a freeze on all raises this year. As in so many other companies across the land, our dictum has become "at least we still have a job". While this is quite true at this point in time, I take little comfort in it. This is certainly not what I expected at my age and I have never put so much mental effort and pushed myself so hard in any job before this as I have over the past year and a half.

1 comment:

Lisa :-] said...

Hi, Meredith!

Like you, I didn't have much of a retirement built up, so I haven't watched it disappear over the past few months. My "security" is tied up in the restaurant, which is still holding its own, backsliding a little, but not going broke yet. So I don't think I'll be "retiring" any time soon. Hell, I have twelve more years before I reach traditional retirement age, anyway. A lot can happen in that amount of time.

Assisted living, retirement homes are not doing too well up here in Oregon...lots of properties going broke or into bankruptcy. I hope the outlook in California is a little better. I would hate to see you lose your job after all the hard work you've put into it.

BTW, though I've quit writing at "Coming to Terms..." you can still find me at "Women On..." ( Come by and say "hi..."

Lisa :-]