The golden years. The years of free living. You got it made years. Continuous vacation years. Words that describe retirement. One statement that missed, One way street. This is the true definition of retirement. And only you have to blame, or praise, for your good and bad judgements.
The last day of work you never forget. Party, everyone wishing you well. They envy you. You have all the time in the world. The first month or two is a party for you. You come by and visit for a few minutes. But after a while they start to think, Don’t he have a life? Actually the first few months you don’t have a life. You feel self conscious of visiting. You feel pathetic and lonely. But like death they let you go and move on. And you have to do the same. Yes visit them once in a while. Now you limit once a month. You dread the thought of not seeing them more often. But it was your choice. And you need to live with that decision. And then it does not help when your love of your life still works. And he or she works in the place where you retired from. She tells you who she saw. And you ask if they ask about you. At first they do. But then you fade away from their memory. It hurts. But what do you expect. They are young. And have their own lives to live. So you realize that you too must move on. It is very sad. You have to reinvent yourself. Make a new life. And if you are homesick, thank God for Facebook. This make it easier for the loneliness. But again you are sadden. You are no more part of their lives. And they are no more a part of yours.
This is where you have to be careful. You have a fork on the road. Which do you take. One is vegetating and boredom. Sitting around. In your PJs all day. And then before your wife comes home you take a bath and get into fresh clothes. Thank God for wives. At this age they keep their spouses alive. Still depression sets in. And always you drop into that void of a hole. Who did you see today? Did they ask about me? And you smile as if everything is alright. You act happy. But you are starting to see that your life is meaningless. Yes you do a lot at home. You make sure you complete a goal a day. But it is still not easy. Yes you have family. Yes you have long distance friends. And you know you can visit them. Then the novelty goes away. How much traveling can you do? You may own your company. But you don’t want to visit them too often. It’s now the CEO’s company. You may be the owner. But the day to day business is theirs.
So reinventing yourself. This is the other fork in the road. This is the healthy way. But again not easy. You don’t want to start another business. You want as little overhead as you can start a new life. It is not only for the money. But to keep your sanity. You don’t go back to work. You are not going to fit in. But there are a lot of lifestyles to reinventing yourself. Online technologies have made it possible and easier to reinvent yourself.
You have a lot of possibilities. One for sure thing is teaching online will be a part of your life. Self help programs. How to programs. A good example is I was writing computer programs in the 80’s and 90’s. Building spreadsheets for companies. So teaching will be a big time of our life.
But you do have to admit. There is no going back. Not only must you improve your life mentally and physically, but also spiritually. This is a one way street. Two thirds of your life is over. You have no idea how long my last third will last. But you must not waste it. The first two months has been a non-directional life. A roller coaster. A waste. The celebration is over. And what you see ahead is a tombstone. But what you have in between is what you will make of your closing of this life. And prepare yourself for that transition.
You are on your own. It won’t be easy. Yes you will have people that care. People to talk to. People that can guide you. But you alone are the only one to make the life you have left a fulfilling one.
Live for the day.