The diary of an unemployed 43 year old …

Its amazing how much your life can change in a matter of weeks.

Its  weird to be out of work for the first time in almost 20 years but it’s also a revelation. That probably sounds weird. I’m officially unemployed / on the dole / joining the ‘unwashed’ Jeremy Kyle brigade  but after 13 years at the same company it’s a refreshing change . Redundancy I think you may just be the push I needed .

As I was leaving work for the very last time a couple of weeks ago and saying my quick goodbyes to everybody  a straight faced Pete looked me in the eyes and said  “sometimes we get stale, its good to have a change, to re-charge” At the time I thought cheeky chuff, he can’t wait to see the back of me and he’s likening me to bloody bread. On reflection I get where he was coming from and I think he was wishing me the best. Albeit in a funny sort of way? I was in a rut, I felt unappreciated, over-looked  and I was bored. I was god-forbid comparable to a piece of stale bread!

I no longer have to get up at 6.30am Monday to Friday, which means  I don’t have to go to bed as early . I can spend more time with D ‘embracing’  his beloved horror films. I may spend a-lot of time being terrified but I also feel less stressed and I’m definitely seeing more of my friends and family. It’s like I was out of the radar 8am – 6pm during the week but now I am available! Sometimes we put so much emphasis on work we forget what is important and while earning money to pay the bills is of the upmost importance, so is making time for your friends and family . There needs to be a happy medium. As mums says you’re a long time dead, do what makes you happy, have no regrets.

I can afford to spend a few weeks, a few months even  doing me things without feeling guilty. It is nice and I’m making the most of this time but the reality of it is I will eventually have to get another job. The redundancy money will only last so long. However I’m 43, the days of conquering the world are over . I want a job, one I love but without the pressure and preferably the office bitching and politics.

So what have I been up-to, in between the job hunting and filling in applications …

Well I’ve been writing . This pleases me muchly, writing my musings makes me happy. I will eventually write that book…

I’ve also been bloody gardening! I made the most of the sun and took myself alfresco. I had only been sweeping leaves for 5 minutes when you know that neighbour that you try to avoid like the plague , well she popped up from over the bushes! Totally out of the blue. An hour later I knew all about Auntie Maureen in France, Bill at number 10, her leg ailments and her husbands new job – all of which are rather lovely but of which I have no history or interest. .. By the time she had finished wittering I had lost the will to live and garden!

On Wednesday myself and 2 of my friends, Karen and Rachel (below) ‘had a first’ and did a spot of modelling. We had been asked by a friend of a friend whether we would mind having our portraits taken to help promote a new business venture. We didn’t have to be asked twice.

Having your photo taken by a professional is more daunting than it sounds and initially I know I felt a little bit daft. We are no spring chickens and some of the poses felt unnatural. We joked it was like ‘Britain & Irelands Next Top Biddy’ but I think after we had warmed up, we did a dam good job. I can’t wait to see the pictures, after-all there are no age limits on having your portraits taken.


I’ve spent a lot of time walking, talking and seemingly eating  alot with mum.( I’ll be like a house –side when I’m eventually back working. ) I’m making the most of her; she hopefully goes into the hospital next week and will be in there for a month. I also caught up with my Auntie Jean and Uncle Ted (mums sister and brother) over lunch . They are as mental as mum and it was an hilarious couple of hours. It’s these little things I had been missing out on because ‘I never had time’ In future these times are going to be my priority and the other things can wait…


Job hunting is officially no fun. Day time TV is enough to make me run to my next job skipping with joy and job centres are pretty scary places.

Let’s start with Day time TV and Jeremy Kyle. I spent my first few days glued to the TV. The novelty of the bad teeth, foul language, knock off uggs and shiny shell suits soon wore off.  Who cares who the father is – I can’t see past the teeth!!! The majority of his ‘guests’ need to go out and buy  themselves some toothpaste, clean their teeth and run a brush through their hair! Its Amazing how these ladies can get pregnant in the first place  – half of them find it hard to string a sentence together ! Then again I suppose you don’t need to speak while your ‘shagging’ grunting will do just fine and grunting …  well there good at that! To think I worked hard to pay for some of these people to live really gets my goat. But don’t start me on that….

I paid my first visit to a job centre last week. I had my initial  interview . This was to ensure I was actively  seeking employment and to warrant receiving  my £71 a week.  It’s no longer called the dole, its ‘job seekers allowance’  Sounds so much posher , but it’s the same thing really!

After we had eventually got past security in the form of 2 burly male bouncers, I was ushered upstairs and mum scurried off to Cole Brothers  ( John Lewis as its more commonly known) to do a spot of shopping. I don’t blame her and I was almost 2 steps behind her.

I would love to say I was given a friendly welcome but it was more like I was commandeered to my seat by a large  ‘weeble-wobble’ lady bouncer, who really needed to buy a bigger shirt. Boob stretch. Not good . The very same lady who proceeded to rugby tackle me to the ground when I got my mobile out . Phone calls aren’t allowed apparently? I really did stick out like a sore thumb. I’m not being a snob, well maybe a little,  but it was like being in the bloody Jeremy Kyle studios! Bad teeth and bad hair galore, oh and add to that BO . I really don’t care how poor people claim to be, there are enough cheap shops out there to enable them to buy some toiletries surely?!

Saying that my appointment went alot better than I had anticipated and the advisor was extremely helpful. I left feeling very positive and I’m enrolled on the ‘how to clean your teeth and string a sentence together ‘ course (sorry I’m being evil ) I’m actually enrolled on the  ‘interview tips’ workshop on Monday morning. I really need this. I’ve not had an interview for as long as I can remember and the thought terrifies me!

After my appointment  and on re-joining mum for a well-earned coffee. I mentioned   that I had a funny lump down my jeans. Upon investigation it transpires they were the previous days knickers! We checked nobody was around, but I must apologise to any staff in the buildings surrounding  as I undid my jeans , hunched them down slightly and fetched out a lovely pair of leopard skin pants! Oh the shame…

Yep some things never change… (Accept I might grow my fringe out what you think?)

bob 6

Work or no work I’m still a scatty mare!

Tracey x

12 thoughts on “The diary of an unemployed 43 year old …

  1. Georgia says:

    Love this post, hope all goes well with the job hunting and you find something that will fulfill you! Unrelated sight lot but when I went on maternity leave I watched about a week of daytime tv and lost the will to live, especially Jeremy Kyle, I don’t understand how people screw up so badly and have atrocious teeth and hair! Haha we aren’t particularly flush when it comes to cash but I still manage to look nice and brush my teeth and hair everyday! Good luck with everything!

  2. Miss Kristina Maggiora says:

    This is really cool, I’m sure that after so many years you deserve a nice break. I can’t say I understand fully since I’m in university but when I have a break from my coursework it does feel amazing to catch up 🙂

  3. Kirk Brocas says:

    I dont know much about Yorkshire, except for the pudding. I enjoy reading your blog. I see you have joyed me in being unemployed in your forties – great isnt it! LIfe is so much less stressful. I am an IT guy and I’ve been retrenched 3 times due to company reorganisation and outsourcing to India. This last time I had a stroke , so that’s like being mugged with a hammer.

    • lizandtracey says:

      So sorry to hear that and I hope your ok soon. I’m sure there is something around the corner for us both.
      I’m glad you enjoy reading and thankyou for taking the time to comment , Tracey

    • lizandtracey says:

      It’s all true 🙂 I will do a follow up in a few weeks when hopefully I have found some work . Thankyou for taking the time to comment & please come again x

  4. trehansaction says:

    Trace this was a great addition to my entertainment for the weekend! Been there and done that during my self employment years excluding Jeremy Kyle tho! One thing you must do is enjoy the transition of the ‘now’ 🙂 and stop saying your no spring chicken your bloody gorgeous well I’ve said my bit haha go forth and prosper, take risks and stay in touch x Steve 🙂

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