Friday, 29 January 2010

A wife's place is in the wrong

I have been a bit dilatory about visiting this week, as I have had some big decisons to make. Nothing is certain at the moment but I shall post about the changes nearer the time that they take effect, if indeed they do happen. This post has been in my draft folder, for some time, waiting for what I considered to be the right time to post it. The Hope Courage Faith award was given to me some time ago by Reasons and I have decided to post the two together. I am sure that Reasons will identify with this post and I thank her for the award.

Six and a half years ago, when we moved from Surrey to Cheshire I was not totally happy with what we were doing. I had my misgivings about the situation and my worst fears turned out to come true. At the time husband was very positive about the move but has since admitted that it was a mistake. However, it is all too late now. We are here and we aren't moving back south.

My husband's self employed status had been shaky for the best part of 15 months when a permanent post, came up in Chester, that exactly matched his skill set. In some ways it seemed to be too good an opportunity to miss. The downside was that it would mean moving 200 miles. I had some reservations. Which would be better? Chester with a job or Surrey without a job. We still had to live, eat and pay the mortgage. I also worked part time, but our financial commitments had been taken on, based on husband's salary. Husband was offered the job which he took. We sold our house in Surrey. Moved to a rented house in Chester before buying the cottage, which as it has turned out needed a lot more work doing to it than we originally thought. Houses always do, we ought to have realised that.

The job lasted two years! His employer a large American bank, expanded too quickly then had to shed staff. Husband was offered voluntary early retirement. In other words redundancy dressed up as enforced voluntary early retirement with a payment of one year's net salary, which was never going to last until he was able to draw his pension.

This American bank had no scruples, what so ever, about the fact that they had moved a couple in their fifties, 200 miles from their families, friends and the roots that they had put down, in my husband's case over his entire life. It did not matter to them that we had uprooted ourselves, moved house, rented a house then bought the cottage, with the help of a mortgage and were just being to find our feet in Chester when they swept the ground from under us. It had all cost us thousands of pounds.

I had suspected that something like this would happen. I clearly remember a conversation that I had with husband, before he accepted the job in Chester. We were in the kitchen of our previous house and I asked what would happen if once we had moved to Chester, he was made redundant. Husband assured me that it would not happen! And again I remember more conversations or rather heated discussions that the pair of us had in the kitchen of the cottage, which was the first room that we tackled when we started the renovation work on the cottage. Moving, back south, at this point was not an option. It would have been impossible to sell the cottage because we had started our programme of renovation work and the general appearance of the cottage was now worse then it had been before we started.

The timing of this early retirement could not have been worse. We had a builder booked to start work on the cottage and no salary on which to support the extension to the mortgage, needed to fund the building work. Luckily the early retirement payment came in handy to pay the builder. Fortunately for us, whilst we were wondering how we would pay the builder or manage some how to put him off, he had disappeared off the face of the earth. Eventually he resurfaced, four months later and announced that he was ready to start. His previous job had over run. After three months of twiddling his thumbs, husband went back to being self employed. Perhaps we should have stuck it out in Surrey? That is something that we shall never know.

34 comments:

Strawberry Jam Anne said...

Oh CW I do sympathise. It's awful having to go against your gut instincts. I can just imagine your frustration when your husband was virtually forced to take redundancy. This is obviously a time for Hope, Courage and Faith and I'm sure you will make the right decision about your future, given time to think and talk it through. Thinking of you. A x

Gilly said...

What a difficult situation|! Still, as you say, you are here now. And we are awfully nice in Cheshire, you know!

I hope your husband's business will build up well, and you can put down roots here.

That builder didn't go by the name of R&R Builders, did he???

Carol said...

It's tough trying to add up all the pro's and con's prior to moving!! At the time you did what you thought was right and followed the job. I am so sorry it didn't work out...it's not easy at the best of times never mind when you are so far away from friends and family!!

I hope things take a turn for the better

C x

Michelloui said...

I have come up against decisions in my life where I cant tell the difference between gut instincts and just basic anxiety about change. It is so hard to tell the difference sometimes! And we look around us and see people making gambles and the gamble pays off and we also see people doing things that turn into terrible mistakes.

Many times, change opens doors for other opportunities. Perhaps there will be something else around the corner that would not have arrived if you stayed in Surrey. Stay strong together, give each other space as well as support, and you will come through this to find something new. You sound amazingly brave and strong. Sending Hope Courage and Faith vibes through the blogosphere... x

Maggie May said...

That must have been really tough and I do sympathise.
The cottage does sound delightful though and the people of Cheshire are friendly.
Hope these things compensates for missing the family etc.
Glad your husband has returned to self employed.

Word verification is REDUN (redundancy?)

Nuts in May

French Fancy said...

Oh how things turn around and shake us up. Big changes are always fraught with difficulty and I am so sorry the bank did what they did. I can imagine the sort of conversations that followed, the resulting atmosphere and recriminations. It must be bubbling away inside you.

I do hope his renewed self-employed status pays off and you can not feel worried and anxious about the future.

Working Mum said...

You have been dealt a bitter blow with your husband's redundancy. You took a chance and it didn't work. Who knew there'd be a global recession? I hope you can make a clear headed decision about what to do next without guilt or recrimination. Yes, we are nice in Cheshire, but home is where the heart is and I for one know that doing up a house doesn't make it a home until your heart accepts it. Courage ma brave! WM x

LindyLouMac said...

Long story but I can empathise with you and your husband. Stay strong and face what ever new adventures lie ahead of you together.
Life is too short not to consider it an adventure.

Take Care x

Moannie said...

Awful, but truly awful times for you, but as you say, what's done is done and we Brits are made of Sterling stuff. Things can now only get better, surely and thatfully you are still young enough to take the blows-I guessing.

lakeviewer said...

Change is never a sure bet on anything. It is a bet. Regrets can only wear you out.

A Brit in Tennessee said...

Sorry to hear about your shortcomings, I think this recession has touched us all in some means or form, some more than others sadly.
We have made choices in our life that turned out not to be the best decision, but they were always based on what knowledge we had at hand, and a gut instinct.....
If you don't try, you'd never know, so with that in mind,Keep Calm and Carry On, it got us through a war, and not to brag, but Cheshire is a lovely place to call home, even if I'm partial to it :)
Hugs,
Jo

Linda - Gold Coast said...

Hope there is a silver lining for you both CW. Love Jo's phrase "Keep Calm and Carry On"♥

Jenny said...

Sorry you're having such a rough time. I remember the anguish when we moved to Scotland 20 years ago because of my husband's job. We had the house we'd always wanted and I was happy in my job so a move was the last thing I wanted but things have turned out pretty well for us. If you don't try you are always left wondering what might have been. Hard for you to look forward at the moment but try not to look back.

Rob-bear said...

I understand the situation, somewhat. The last job I had, I took on with some serious misgivings. But at the time, it seemed things were right, and I (like the U.s. Presidents) was caught between Iraq and a hard place.

I should have trusted my misgivings. The job almost killed me. I'm still among the "walking wounded." But I am making progress at becoming whole.

朋友 said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Susie Vereker said...

Oh how difficult, how complicated and how unfair. I do hope things work out in the end.

Rob-bear said...

P.S.: I'm a bit troubled by the title. Is that really so?

Alex said...

The important thing is that you and your husband are still together

Alex said...

them important thing is that you and him are still together

Akelamalu said...

What an awful thing to happen. It's bad enough moving so far from your family but for your hubby to lose his job is just terrible. I'll send some Reiki to your situation - maybe your husband's business will really take off now and it will all turn out to be a blessing in disguise. I hope so. x
I'm just back off holiday and trying to catch up.

cheshire wife said...

Rob-bear - it's tongue in cheek Rob. Would it have been wrong to say no to the move?

Rob-bear said...

I was hoping it was a joke of some sort. Glad I was not disappointed!

Gill - That British Woman said...

oh that is awful, I hope things sort themselves out soon for you. In this day and age no job is ever secure is it?

Gill in Canada

Carol said...

There is an award over at mine for you :-)

C x

Terrace Crawford said...

Life is hard. So sorry to hear of your unclear path. I'll pray for peace of mind and direction for you.

--Terrace Crawford
www.terracecrawford.com
www.twitter.com/terracecrawford

imbeingheldhostage said...

Don't be hard on yourself for not saying no-- how could anyone know what would happen? Sunday we heard a talk about how our trials and adversities help us to be more empathetic and caring towards others. You won't ever know whaqt would have happened if you had stayed in Surrey, but maybe you could reflect on the good things that have come about because of the move the Cheshire? I'm grasping here-- I hate that you're going through such a hard time :-(

deb1712 said...

I hope things turn out for the best. My dad always looked at new developments as an adventure but I know it can be worrying. Our younger son is working for a company that seems to be running out of work and money!

cheshire wife said...

Deb - your son's work situation must be a worry to you, but I think that today being made redundant (at least once and when you are young) is a rite of passage.

Hilary said...

I'm sorry this happened to you. Something similar happened to me many years ago. It turned out for the best. It's damaging to your soul to live with regrets. And they say that change is the only constant. I hope things change again for you soon.

Valerie said...

It is sad that the recession and uncaring employers can affect us so badly. I won't go into my own experience - it takes too long - but it did work out for us. Mind you, moving wasn't an option so I was lucky there. But there is hope, you may not see it at the moment, but it's there. If you and your husband stick together and work together the future might not seem so bleak. God bless you CW. I pray everything works out for you both.

cheshire wife said...

Thank you for all your comments and good wishes.

The decisions referred to at the beginning of the post do not relate to husband's job or a house move. If/when they take place I'll be posting about them but until then they may be nothing more than an idea.

Sandi McBride said...

I know everything will come out alright in the long run...you have the faith to get on with things...and prayers will be sent on your behalf!
xo
Sandi

Holly said...

Life never seems to go as smoothly as we might wish...good luck and best wishes for you in the future.
Holly, hollyberryelf.blogspot.com

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