I have learned that retiring is an event surrounded by celebrations! I have been the recipient of at least three events of others celebrating my retirement, and my life’s work in the last few weeks. Yesterday, I was one recipient at an event at the college celebrating all of us who are retiring. I have to admit to being annoyed, over the last month, when everyone hugged and yelled “Congratulations”!
I can’t really explain how it just seemed not to sit right. Why were folks so excited?
Yesterday, I figured it out….okay, I know, perhaps you had it figured out at the beginning of the blog. But, I didn’t. It’s a goal, a prize, a place that we all dream about. Even if the dream is not what most think it is, and I certainly don’t intend to get out the old fishing pole (don’t even own one), and sit with a beer and vegetate for years. I have a long list of house projects, hobby ideas, family times, hanging out with children time, and at least a bazillion books to read.
But I do now understand why so many are happy for me. I have reached another goal that so many of us work towards. It’s often hard to remember the goal or even believe in it when you are young. I’ve certainly been in times in my career where I wondered if I would get that next job, or if it would pay enough, or if it would have insurance, or how I would find child care, or if I would like it as a job. Those times can weight down the imagining of this time I’ve hit. I imagined it, and worked hard, really hard, to get here. Now I’m here.
Just the other morning, I said to my hubby: I had such a horrid childhood, and there were a few times I didn’t think I’d get to adulthood, no less have this time with a wonderful family, in a wonderful town, with time to decide what to do with.
I also remain who I have always been since I recovered from that childhood: determined to make others’ lives better in even just little ways; and to give to children in some small way.
I have made a difference in my work, and I will continue to make a difference. I get now that retirement is when I get to make that difference in whatever way I wish to in my own time and way. Nice, nice. Congratulations to me!