Recently I made a rather public announcement of my upcoming retirement next month. Oh, I had signed my official paperwork a few weeks ago, notified the managers and supervisors as well as my co-workers. I had discussed this endlessly with family and close friends but it occurred to me today that I had not really made an official statement. Naturally I turned to social media. This does seem a quick and easy way to keep our larger circle of people updated on our latest activities, interests, and other (sometimes useless) information.
When you are young, retirement is usually the last thing you worry about. Life is rushing by, we are pursing education, raising children, jobs, have family obligations and other responsibilities that take up so much of our time and money. Who has time to think-or even imagine that the day will come when we will retire?
The decision to retire was a difficult one to make. I did a great deal of reading and research and understood that there will be some changes with income, health insurance, possible health concerns on the horizon, loss of identity, too much time on my hands…..(huh? I welcome that inconvenience! ) I have had the luxury of watching Thommee and some close friends face some of these challenges. In my limited circle of the recently retired, however, I have not observed any regrets. My other long-term retired friends and acquaintances seem happy and fulfilled. Retirement is not simply a financial decision, to work some place just for the fun of it, or time to begin a second career, babysit grandchildren, spend more time with family and friends, volunteer, or to cultivate those hobbies that have been on the back burner for far to long. I guess it is like everything in life, it is what you do with what you have been given that makes a difference.
I have a plan. I know myself well enough to know I must keep moving or I may find myself sitting on the couch flipping channels for the next ten years. I need a routine ( not too rigid), some sense of structure. I am ready to take on this challenge.