I didn’t get up at 3:30 a.m. today. I didn’t have to.
It didn’t take me thirty minutes to drive to work today arriving at 4:45 a.m. while it’s still dark.
I didn’t disarm the security at the office this morning. I wasn’t the first one to arrive.
I didn’t do any of the things I do every morning.
Today is the first day of not working which will lead to my retirement. For the next few months, I will be at the job I’ve been doing for twenty years by working three and a half days a week, reducing to less every couple of months until I’m fully retired.
What am I supposed to do with the rest of my life?
More to the point, what am I supposed to do day by day?
My financial advisor said I was ready and didn’t need to wait any longer.
I told my boss over a year ago it would happen this year so he should start planning.
I’ve reduced my hours, and this very week I’m reducing them more and will continue to reduce them every month or two.
I’ve saved for retirement.
I’ve done everything the correct way, or so I’m told.
I teach part-time, I’m a writer with unfinished books. I can hardly wait to get my garden growing again.
I’ve worked two and three and even four jobs at a time for the past thirty-something years. My mind is tired, my body is worn out and needs replacement of parts the warranty won’t pay for. I can’t sleep yet I’m too tired to do anything after I work ten hours every day. I have over one hundred books on my to be read list. My house looks like a before house from the television show Hoarders. I have so much I need and want to do if I only had the time. So why the hell am I petrified of retirement?
Maybe I’m afraid of being in charge of my time, every single minute of every single day.
Can you fail at being retired?
Just how bad can not having to get up and go to work each day be?
Sleeping in if you want to? Do I need to practice this so I can be successful?
Having the time to cook a meal instead of eating out for two meals every day? What are the cons of this? Saving money? Eating healthy?
Dread fills my mind.
I’ve been told that retiring isn’t easy for a lot of people. I guess I’m one of the lot.
I’m told by friends that I’ve earned retirement. I’ve never thought of it that way.
Some say I deserve to do what I want at this stage of my life. Will someone tell me what this stage is?
My Dad worked until the day he died at 91. He loved working. I do too, but there are days I feel burned out. There are days I don’t want to get out of bed at 3 a.m. There are days I would love to lie around and read.
There are places I would love to go to, things I would love to see. Thank you COVID 19 for tearing those dreams apart.
In my family alone, I’ve seen the good and the bad of retirement as well as no retirement at all. Did I inherit this fear from my Dad? More to the point, what exactly am I afraid of?
To be continued:
© 2020 Wanda M. Argersinger
All Rights Reserved
Life in the Land of Confusion
I would love to hear from others trying to retire and wondering what’s ahead.
E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org