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Now what?

Just a few weeks ago, my wife and I were looking at buying a house in Bend, OR, where the median price is now more than $400k. We were putting an offer in the next day, so I was half joking when I texted my boss to say, “Hey, is this job, like, really solid?” He texted back that we needed to talk, that it was a “fluid situation,” and that I shouldn’t buy a house.


A few days later, he called to say that my position was being eliminated for budget reasons. Part of me seemed to know it had been coming all along. I was angry that I’d uprooted my life for the job only to have it taken away after 8 months, but other than that, I felt almost nothing. My main thought was, “Now what?”

That’s an important question in our lives, and we have to answer it often. When one thing ends, another begins. Sometimes we have a choice about that next thing, and sometimes not. When we do have a choice, we ought to choose carefully.

My choice, for now, is to re-orient my life around something other than an 8-5 job. I’m going to try very hard to make a living that way, because people who do work an 8-5 need help and I like helping them. No one has ever complained that they have too much support and not enough to do. They need someone like me. I’m counting on it.

I have a little fantasy where I’m a digital nomad. Our freelance and contract work is so steady and voluminous that we can spend a month in Cuzco, or Valencia, or Vancouver, continuing to work wherever there is good WiFi. There are people who do this, and I want to be one of them. But even if it doesn’t quite pan out like that, simply being the master of my fate will do for now, even if the money’s not great. Succeed or fail, it’s going to be an adventure, and I like adventures.

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