Saturday, June 27, 2009

Retirement on the Far Horizon?

July 1, I will have worked for the same company for 27 years. Wow, part of dying breed! I love my career and love so much about what I do. Have lots of friends through work. And I will probably keep doing it for my company for another few years. But I remember when I started thinking about when I could retire - it was maybe 17 years ago - and retirement had originally been this year. So it's been on my mind more lately since it's within striking distance now. My husband and I should be debt-free by the next year including our home, so that will definitely open up some options.
A good friend of mine just retired last week. He and I had worked together for five years at the same location, but I had known him years before he had moved to our plantsite from another state - same company. We had actually had dinner (we were at a conference) at the top of the World Trade Center only months before the two towers were brought down. And this week, he quietly left not only all of us at work, but town as well and drove off to his second home, now his only home in CA. with his partner. I still don't have his email adress.
I keep thinking, "I wonder what that moment was like as he drove out of town? What was it like to wake up the next morning NOT having to go to work anymore? How does it feel to leave behind what had been a huge part of your life for many years?" Some people who leave do come back sometimes - either just for a friendly visit or as a subcontractor doing a little consultant work. Nice if you can get it. I think. I think when I leave, I'll cry my head off though and I'm not even leaving town!
But on the other hand, I'll be freed up to do some of the things I have had to squeeze in for years or not done at all - like getting serious about my art again and working in some way to help animals. I'll love that. I want to continue doing resource counseling part-time, too. Teaching Aging Lite principles. And of course, I'll be free to exercise as much as I want! Yahoo! Maybe I'll finally get that scull I've been wanting and learn how to row. Long walks with the dogs; rides on the horses. Yikes! I won't have time to wonder what retirement will be like - I'll be too busy living it!
But seriously, I do have a plan and I can't imagine leaving work one day for good and waking up the next day with nothing to do. I think more and more of us know that we have to have a plan and we need to begin working it way before we wake up that first morning. I do, but still.... I wonder how it will feel? Will my backyard look different? Will my street look different? Will I look different? Crazy questions that I guess sometime soon I'll have the answers for...or maybe I'll be too busy to wonder about them by then!


  1. Ane it will feel great when you retire.

    Many of the women in my support group including myself are angry that we will not be able to retire and rest on our laurels. We have all worked and had to quit because of health reasons.

    It would be nice to grow old with our spouses.

    I didn't know you did art, did I?

    Love Renee xoox

  2. First of all, thanks for visiting my blog and signing as a follower! Welcome!

    About retirement: It's absolutely awesome to not have to get up every day at the same time and get to work...and do all the creative things one loves to do instead. When I retired, however, I took on a part time position as a university lecturer in women's studies and that continues to be a great experience. For me, retirement has been awesome.

    But, for some, retirement is just not what works for them. Going part-time is perfect, if it can be arranged. (Can you tell I'm a lecturer? Ha!)

    Have a great day! Enjoy! Thanks for signing up for my GIVEAWAY!

  3. I think retirement should be renamed! It seems that once I left my "regular" job, I do more now than I did when I was actually working a 9-5 position. We fill our lives with the things we love to do as opposed to the "working" things. It is just will totally enjoy the event!