What this boils down to is second chances. New starts. Fair shots. Sounds very American to me. As a criminal defense attorney who has represented many individuals charged with criminal acts, I have seen first-hand those clients who have a lot to offer society, but are shut out because of an isolated mistake.
You are definitely more than just a job title. Focus on the aspects of who you are that you like the most and seek to fulfill them on a daily basis. You'll feel better about yourself and your situation, and maybe you'll even develop a healthier perspective about your identity than you had when you were working full time.
As companies focused more on the bottom line, they began to refer to workers as "assets" and when times got tough, they looked at which "assets" to cut. "Do more with less," "Get rid of the fat," and "leaner and meaner" were the propaganda slogans that sent chills down workers' spines. Older workers quickly read the writing on the wall.
It never occurred to me that I would be unemployed in mid-life. Well, yes, it had occurred to me when my tits were still perky and my mind malleable, so I went to grad school, got a Ph.D. and embarked on what was once a promising and stellar career. But after I found myself in the cross-hairs of those in institutional power, my carefully-constructed career came tumbling down.