If You Could…Would You Change Your Job?

Frequently I have thought about it. Not with angst or regret, but as a cursory thought and a fleeting consideration, wondering how it would be if I had taken a significantly different direction in my life. Perhaps I occasionally deliberate in this way because I have such varied interests. Now, be sure of this before we go further; I would not change my life at all–not in any major way, for I have lived an exceptionally happy life and am surrounded by loyal friends and a remarkable family. My entire life has been centered around God, His work and His people, and I am one hundred percent sure I could not have chosen a better center for my existence. So, I’m not talking about that. I’m speaking more of secular activities and occupations.

Think about it with me: If you could start over, would you again choose the occupation in which you are involved today? Would you choose once more to be an attorney, a teacher, a preacher, a doctor, a carpenter, a sales-person, a nurse, a singer, a speaker, a journalist? Or, knowing what you do now, would you choose something different?

As I referenced earlier, I have been exceptionally blessed: Jerry has been the major “bread-winner” in our home, and I’ve spent very little time working outside our home. I have little occupational training. Now, don’t get the idea I’ve been lolling about all these years; quite the opposite is the case. I’ve worked hard and long in our churches and in my home, and I would change none of that. I love being a wife and a mom.

But I have lots of interests…and sometimes I think about how it would be if I taken a different way. I’ll tell you what interests me.

1. When I was in high school I was sure I wanted to be a doctor. That still interests me and if I were to choose that route today, I think I would decide to be an obstetrician. Emergency room work intrigues me, also.

2. I think I would love to be an attorney, but I would not be a defense attorney. I cannot imagine defending someone who I felt sure was guilty of a crime. Couldn’t do that.

3. I would love to be a student of the Constitution; might like to be a judge.

4. Photography greatly appeals to me. I could be a professional photographer and love it.

5. It’s surely not practical, but I can envision myself as a perpetual student. Love the thought of expansive and ongoing study of history, English, literature.

6. If I could think of a way to do it and get paid for it, I definitely could be a world traveler.

Want to hear some things I definitely wouldn’t want to do?

1. I could not earn a living by being a seamstress. I literally cannot sew on a button or hem a sleeve and it be a perfect job. Just can’t do it. Thread tangles, nothing is straight…hate the job.

2. Although I’m probably pretty good at it, I don’t like selling things.

3. I cannot imagine being a computer guru. While I spend much time on a computer, and am a skillful typist (won contests in high school) I detest the nitty-gritty of making things work. I’m not mechanically inclined at all. Barely can empty the vacuum and get it back together properly.

4. While I would like to be a doctor, I don’t think I’d enjoy being a nurse. Too much paper work and scullery duties.

5. Don’t want to be a cook, either.

6. Nor a bookkeeper, CPA…none of that. (I do not like bookkeeping, but get stuck with it all the time. 😦

I may have some other thoughts to add, but I definitely want to hear from you. What is your occupation? Are you happy you chose that field? Why? Why not? What would you like to do instead?

By Shirley Buxton

Still full of life and ready to be on the move, Shirley at 81 years old feels blessed to have lots of energy and to be full of optimism. She was married to Jerry for 64 years, and grieves yet at his death in August of 2019. They have 4 children, 13 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren...all beautiful and highly intelligent--of course. :)

14 replies on “If You Could…Would You Change Your Job?”

There are several things that come to mind…

A proffesional Hunter…guiding safaris in Africa….now that would be a job. As long as I could get home to my bed every night…I dont sleep well camping.

Game Warden….I love things that have to do with the outdoors.

A Naturalist (wildlife bioligist?)….just about anything dealing with plants, animals, and nature in general….love it.

And I know this sounds wierd and out of character for me….but I love the sound of a chello…maybe a chellist in a symphonic orchestra.

Or a session guitarist.


Shirley, several of your choices do appeal to me.

I would love to be a doctor. I think it’s too late for medical school, though.

I would enjoy being a lawyer, and I would like to defend those who cannot afford the high-priced lawyers that make us all so angry. I could defend people that I knew were guilty, since they still have the right to a defense. I would also urge them to make things right with God and to own up to what they did, if they really did the crime.

I love to cook. I would love to own my own restaurant and do some of the cooking.

Sometimes I think of pastoring a church and wonder if God has called me. It’s not clear at this point. I love teaching the Bible.

At one point I was on my way to becoming a composer-songwriter. I still write music, but I don’t know if I could make money at it.


I could not resist this post. Yes I have wasted many daydreaming hours thinking about “What If”. I think the key factor here is found in Ecc. 9:10 “Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might…..” or may I say “give your best”. I think its when we do this, we feel true fulfillment. So, yes I think that any one of your listed items you could have done, and done WELL. Because anything I have ever seen you do, its always done well and with class. I know that these are not the comments you’re really looking for but anyone who knows you would agree. As for me, law school:-)


Well, actually I did change my occupation. Out of High School, I was going to college to become a nurse. Then along came Mr. Perfect. I married, quit college and soon became mother to twin boys (with another son 3 years later). Iwas blessed to be able to stay home with my babies, but after a while I needed to find outside work.
I started working at a desk job in insurance. At first I liked it, but a few years down the road I came to loathe my job. By then, Mr. Perfect had turned into Mr. Very Imperfect, and I found myself raising 3 teenage boys alone.

Just before I turned 40, I had to have surgery, and while I was in the hospital I wandered the halls so interested and curious. I made up my mind to go talk to a college counselor while I was off work on sick leave.

That was the best decision I ever made in my life (besides choosing to live for God). I talked to a counselor and found that I could become a Registered Nurse within 4 maybe 5 years. I thought to myself that those years would pass no matter what I did with them. After 4 or 5 years, I could still be wishing, or I could be finished. I jumped in and took off. Not having anyone to pay the bills, etc., I worked full time and went to school part time while finishing my pre-requisites, then worked at night while I went to nursing school during the day. Four years later, I graduated with high honors. I have now been a Registered Nurse for almost 12 years and LOVE it! (sorry this is so long, but hope it encourages someone to go for it, if you want!)


@Virgina, thank you for sharing here. You have such a beautiful attitude.

@Eva, you sound like a charmer–one full of life. I pray your happiness continues and your dreams come true.

@Carol, you need to get on with the children’s book, and I surely believe you could write a great devotional volume. You’re probably right about the atmosphere when they’re brainstorming Odyssey segments. It’s probably hilarious.

Thanks to all of you for sharing your thoughts here.


Very interesting post! I too, would not change anything about my life, which like yours is centered around God and the church. As far as an occupation, I have always thought it would be really neat to be one of the writers for Adventures in Odyssey. I would love to be in on the brainstorming sessions. I bet those folks get really silly when it gets late and come up with some wacky ideas. I also thought it would be cool to work for some kind of advertising company, because I love coming up with slogans and jingles. Finally, to write a book would be really neat too. I do have a children’s story I wrote a few years ago, but I would have to have just the right person to illustrate it. I think it would be neat to write a devotional too. 🙂


As a child I dreamt of being a teacher; who doesn’t right?! Then I babysat through my teen years and decided I didn’t like rug-rats…HAHA! Actually I volunteer at my children’s schools and really enjoy interacting with the kids. I am that ‘computer guru’ and I love what I do. God has blessed me with an awesome job. I work from home so I get the best of both worlds…I have a career and I’m a stay at home mom. I dream of being an author (maybe someday), professional photographer and being Martha Stewart….who knows…I’m not dead yet?! 🙂


I too would not change my life. I have enjoyed the different positions I have held in the church.
I have always worked in the hospital until 6 mo ago when I retired . I throughly enjoyed my field of work in the business office.
I would have preferred to marry younger and have a young family, but God had other plans. Marrying later in life gave me some great opportunities that marrying young does not give you. My husband and I have now been given the opportunity to travel for which we are thankful.


@Slamdunk, hope your family issue is resolved in the best way possible. I suspect every family at one time or another has things arise which are less than pleasant, but which must be attended.

I think I might include in my premise that a person’s occupation might not totally be a mistake. Might be, or a person could be quite content with what he/she is doing, but have intense interest in other areas. Then again, we might have chosen the wrong field, and would be happier in another. All very interesting.

@Golden, you’re funny, and I’m glad to have you commenting on my blog. You and Tena will have to get together; she wants to be a race car driver (I know her and while she’s not really old, she’s no spring chicken), and you’re wanting to be in a roller derby. You could put on a benefit for your churches and it would be a wild sell-out, no doubt.


I think we make the best decisions we can with the information we have at the time. Does that mean we make good ones? No way. I was an art teacher. I love some aspects of it. The relationships and the “ah ha” moments the kids would have when they saw they could in fact create! I lived for those moments. There are many things I would enjoy doing now that I am not teaching. But really at the end of the day I just want to be in the center of God’s will using the talents he has given me. I think that is a much harder question to answer.

but really. if i answer the question honestly i would love to be in a roller derby. i LOVE to talk trash 🙂 there is something about grown woman on roller skates beating each other up which appeals to my primal side


Good topic.

Since I am on a few month hiatus to deal with a family issue, I’ll answer this question into the future a few months. Yes, it has taken a long time, but I am happy with the direction I am going. Looking back, I should have listened to others and asked more questions, but my interest in policing is something that will never go away.


Tena, you slay me! You would like to be a race car driver? I love it.

I like the shop owner idea, too. I’ve thought it would be fun to have a bookstore/sandwich shop with a pot-bellied stove where people could eat delicious little snacks and read great books.

I would not like to be a waitress.

Love you. Thanks for sharing here.


This post interests me greatly. I like it a lot. 🙂

First of all…I feel the same as you as far as, I would NOT change a thing about my life and what I chose to do. And that is, to be a wife and mother. And I, like you, am so grateful to God that my husband has always been the money-maker and I have been able to stay at home. I am SO thankful for that! I’m also thankful for the opportunities to do the work I do in my church and would not change that part of my life at all…ever. 🙂

Here are a few things I would have liked to do…in another life. 🙂

1. I would love to be a shop-owner. I would like to own a cute little shop that carried home decor, lamps, seashells, candles, lotions, pens & pencils, books, etc.

And…sell coffee (lattes, etc.).
And…have a spot people could sit with their coffee and read or visit.

I can picture it perfectly in my head, but cannot describe it the way I want to.

I would name it: “Tena’s Treasures, Books & Coffee”. Or something similar and simple. 😀

So…what do you think about that?

2. I would love to own a restaurant or a bakery. All my own, home-made recipes. 😀 Fun!

3. I would love to be a waitress in a restaurant (not mine). 😉

4. I would love to have been a…race car driver! 😀

5. And like you, I would LOVE to have been a world traveler. I could write reviews of places to vacation, stay at and eat at. That would be so fun! 😀


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