Wednesday, September 6, 2017

TEOTWAWKI - Good for a Change

A week ago, today, was the start of our personal TEOTWAWKI.  Last Wednesday was the day that our income would end, and we would be plunged into financial dire straits.

Only, it wasn't.

Yes, Wednesday was the last day of Deus Ex Machina's severance and vacation pay, and going forward in the world without a steady income scares the beejeesus out of a lot of people.

I wasn't scared.

Not even for a second.

It was actually, at least for me, an overall positive experience.

I very much enjoy Deus Ex Machina's company, and I really enjoy just spending time with him.  We spent a lot of - quality - time together when he wasn't stressed out about stuff that was happening at work.  It was really nice.

Positive #1 of the job loss was that Deus Ex Machina and I reconnected.

But he also had the time, and more importantly, the energy, to finish our bedroom, and we (finally!) moved our bed out of our office and back into our room.

I took my friend on a tour of our house after we'd moved some things around, and she (like I) marveled at how much space we have. We have some big rooms in our house - when they aren't so cluttered.

Positive #2 of the job loss was that we decluttered our living space.

I've actually read a lot about the psychological impact of too much clutter, and these past few years have validated what I knew.  There were some significant and profound negatives to our too cluttered space.  I don't know if you all noticed or not, but I haven't really been able to write much for the past several years.  I'm blaming it on the clutter, because now that my office isn't filled to the ceiling with stuff, I'm finding it easier to sit down and fill this white space.  That's huge.

As a further bonus, Deus Ex Machina was able to really spend some time IN our house.  Over the last twenty years, he's been here, of course.  He lives here.  But like most working adults, one's home is where one houses one's stuff while one is at work.  In fact, if one excludes the time one is sleeping, the average working adult spends more time at work than at home.

Positive #3 was that Deus Ex Machina was able to spend some quality time here in HIS home - time he'd never had before - and the result was that all of these projects I've been suggesting over the years were things he was able to see as being both good ideas and necessary improvements.  We haven't tackled them all, but, at least, he was willing to discuss them without cringing at the thought of another agonizingly involved project that would dishevel our entire household for YEARS.

He also learned that there are some home improvement tasks that I'm actually good at - like grouting tile.  It's something I do well.  We have an area that needs tiling, and we have all of the materials, except grout and tile adhesive.  I think he'll trust me enough, now, to tackle the project, because he knows that if he starts the work, I have his back in making sure it gets finished.

In the end, Deus Ex Machina found another job, but what's better is that he was able to work on some very cool side projects about which he is pretty excited.  In time those side projects might work into something bigger.  

Positive #4 was that Deus Ex Machina had some time to explore what he really wants to be when he grows up.

I know it sounds silly to say that losing one's job was a positive for us, because for most people it's an incredibly stress-inducing experience, but for Deus Ex Machina and me, it was more positive than negative.

We were able to make some improvements on the way things were and make choices about where we want to go from here.

In the end, TEOTWAWKI isn't, necessarily, a negative thing.  It's just change, and not all change is bad.


  1. That's great! We just came out of a 7 week layoff, and did much better than we thought. We actually saved a bit, with various incoming $ and cutting back. Always good to have affirmation to the changes you made. Projects are great to get done!!!

  2. Sounds like your well on the way to freedom!
    Well done both of you.

  3. The all good news post! That's great! I am also a champion tile grouter - it is one of the very few DIY talents I have. Go us!