I am looking for some insight. What would you do in my situation? Some background. I’m no young dude. At the age of 72 I find myself agonizing over making a decision regarding staying with, or leaving my band. I have made countless lists of the pros and cons, looked at it from all angles and still, one minute the answer is obvious and the next I swing back the other way. We are a successful, popular band and have been playing for 10 and a half years, gigging 12 to 15 times a year on average. Our audiences give us positive, enthusiastic feedback and we easily get gigs just from word of mouth. My bandmates are great guys and while there might be some occasional points of friction, for the most part we get along well and I can’t think of a better group of guys to make music with. So, what’s the problem? First, there is the physical pain. I have a progressive disease in my hands and fingers that is painful, not just when I play but pretty much all of the time. It’s getting a little harder to deal with all the time. I have arthritis in my upper spine that flares up when standing for long periods and is not helped all that much by sitting. Any gig longer than an hour is difficult and there aren’t many than are under 2 to 4 hours. I’m physically beat after every gig. Then there is the fact that I’m no longer feeling the joy that I did in the early years of playing. The praise from our audiences feels good at the time but it wears off quickly. We play the same stuff over and over (comes with the territory of being in a band) and I find that I often dread a coming gig and wish that it was over before it even gets here. The time onstage doing the actual playing is usually fun (not always though) but the other B.S. that goes along with setting up, tearing down, travel to and from, rehearsals etc. sucks most of the fun out of it and much of the time I feel like I’m just going through the motions waiting for it to be over so that I can go home. Some might say, take some time off and come back to it but at my age, there is no time to spare and there would be no coming back after leaving. Many would kill to be in a gigging band and I sometimes feel that it’s crazy to not want it but that’s how I’m feeling about it most of the time. Giving it up and just playing at home is not a new thought. I honestly think I'd be okay with doing that.. I can’t even count the number of times I’ve made the decision to pull the plug and then we get one of those gigs where the feedback makes you proud of what you do and you think “ I can do this for awhile longer”. Unfortunately, that feeling usually doesn’t last for very long. I have to make a decision soon, the sooner the better. Right now we have no gigs on the calendar and I don’t plan to commit to any before I figure this out so there is no better time than now. It’s just really hard to give something up that you know that you can’t get back but at the same time it doesn’t make much sense to hang on to something that just for the sake of having it. Is it time to move on to other things that I’m running out of time to do or is it better to tough it out and appreciate what I’ve got for as long as I can? It shouldn't be this hard to decide but I'm really struggling with it. I’ve been struggling with this decision for the last several years and if I’m honest with myself, deep down I know what is probably right for me. Who among you have been down this road and where did you end up?