I had envisioned that once retired, I would be updating this daily; not quite! I find myself unsure of everything now; I have sense of how any of this works – it is all too new and foreign. “Retirement?” “Routine?” Hah!! Your words are strange and frighten and confuse me; I am a simple worker bee and do not comprehend such lofty concepts as relaxation……(credit to the late great Bill Hartman)
My point is, I have certainly had weeks off from work in the past, but they were planned and done with the knowledge that I had to go back. Now…….I have to understand what it’s like to not go back. Permanent vacation. Odd concept. I used to worry almost every day of vacation – sort of a “make it count” fear driving me – don’t waste it. Because I knew I had to go back. Breakfast here one day, lunch there another day, do we go for pizza or Chinese tonight……and those were just the meal worries!! Managers plan and maybe that was my problem, you can’t script life. Don’t even try! I suffered mightily from that as a younger man, and the disappointment of life not following my script ruined oh so many days of my life. No, you can’t script it – but you still need a plan.
But retirement is different from vacation (thank you Captain Obvious)! There is permanence, at least as much as the book of life has blank pages waiting for you. At the very least it is not a week or two; no need to rush, to cram into time slots. I “get” that part of it. It is day 3 of retirement and I have not even considered the idea of doing lunch (like breakfast, a rare treat for me usually reserved only for vacations). I haven’t because I know there is no need to rush; if we don’t go this week, we’ll go next week. Same with going places, by a typical vacation day 3 we’d have gone somewhere and just coming back, or would be in the midst of some big yard project (my wood cutting/splitting doesn’t count). And we’ve done neither. We did do breakfast Monday because….well, because its breakfast and a nice way to start retirement. We went shopping for a wood stove insert yesterday. Today my almost 4yo awesome granddaughter is over for the day – going to the aquarium soon. Tomorrow may be a trip to the casino; or maybe not – no pressure. So I think I grasp the essential concept of retirement.
But I, it, lacks a rhythm, a routine. It is just too new to figure out how it will all play out. Don’t get me wrong – I am not at all certain I want too much routine. I’ve spent a huge part of my life (like most all of it) running to schedules and deadlines. There is much to be said about letting life take you for a stroll for a change. Today I think we’ll do this…..whatever “this” happens to be. That is very appealing. But I still want some semblance of cadence. Bedtime has already moved from 9 or 10PM to 11 every night now; there is a routine and one that is different now with retirement.
And writing these is one of those things with which I have not yet fallen into a routine. At least once as I tried to envision retirement, I pictured getting up and having my coffee, typing a post for my blog. Well that hasn’t happened yet – not even close. Maybe it will, maybe it won’t; but I do need to find some rhythm to my writing; I think that will be nice. It’s funny how far astray I’ve drifted – for several months at least – in my writing. It began very esoteric, nebulous, and almost whimsically philosophical; ponderings on spiritual vibrations and frequencies. I want to get back to that in time. But retirement was such a huge life change for me that I had no choice but to go on and on about it. I thank you dear reader, for humoring me in that and allowing me to be so self-absorbed, and for sticking with me. At least I assume you have; there is much about this that is like tossing a rock into a black hole. You write, you post, you send it out to the web…..and nothing. There is no opportunity for feedback to understand if what I proffered had worth. The web counter tells me there are at least some visitors every day, and my wife will sometimes provide feedback, so I have some hope my words still have meaning to some, or at least provide some semblance of enjoyment or entertainment. But you just never know….I guess this is much like a post of the other day where I wrote of working so many years hoping that what I was doing each day mattered; that it was the right thing to do for my people. I write and hope it is the best I can offer to the folks that care to stop and review it, but never really know. So ultimately I fall back on trusting myself to “go with the gut” and stay the course. None the less, it is long overdue to get back to perspective and the like and to stop with the “my retirement” thing. Consider it a min-series. And it’s almost over!