In the Foreground #sol20

Screen Shot 2020-02-25 at 3.55.52 PMIn the Foreground #sol20

February 25, 2020

My husband and I went on vacation last week.  Recently, when we vacation, we discuss the location with the lens of retirement.  Could we live here?  What would we do?  Is it walkable?  All the questions that we think we might want to know.

I’m not sure when we started playing this game.  Perhaps when we moved to Massachusetts and knew without a doubt that it wouldn’t be our permanent home.  What would be?  So, we casually discuss our retirement lives.

Our retirement lives… Mr. K leans toward warmth and proximity to the ocean.  It sounds appealing, endless sunshine and heat.  Long walks.  A nearby library.  Our ‘retirement’ jobs?  Mr. K- mixing paint at Home Depot .   Mine- reading tutor

We mostly consider all these things fleetingly, in random conversation, in vacation planning.  We think about it after bad snows and hard commutes, tough weeks.  We think about it because it’s nice to have something to look forward to together.

People ask me occasionally about retirement now.  I never feel like they mean, when are you going to retire already? I usually say, not soon… and mean it.

I’m not sure how I will know when it’s time to retire.  Will I just walk out one June day and say, I think that’s all for now.  Many of my former colleagues are retired.  They fill their days with grandchildren, part-time jobs, books, and hikes.

For today, I’ll continue to think about it in the abstract.  Consciously not turning my hair to its now natural white.  Continuing to show up early and stay late.   Read professional books and listen to professional podcast.  Learn and do and try and strive on… for now.

Last night I told a friend, I’m trying to buy less children’s books. I mean, what will I do with them when I retire?

She said, retire? when will that be?  I never see myself retiring.  

When she said that I thought,  I don’t really see myself retiring either.

I suppose that’s when I’ll know it’s the right time, when I can see myself retiring.  I’ll let you know.

img_0602  Thank you to my writing community of fellow slicers through Two Writing Teachers.  Join us next Sunday, March 1st for the Slice of Life March Challenge  to slice for a month solid.  What a wonderful adventure!

6 thoughts on “In the Foreground #sol20

  1. Love this! My husband and I have similar conversations although we still have a few to put through college! We like to imagine and play out scenarios just as you have captured here! I agree it will come down to a feeling, to just knowing that it’s right. In the meantime, keep spreading your joy of your work and slices from your life – they inspire! Here’s to working because we can and want to and retiring…when it’s right!

  2. I wrote about retirement today too. Only this isn’t something I have given much thought to. It just kind of popped into my head recently, and I am doing more questioning as to why? Your beach retirement idea/thoughts sound wonderful!

  3. When people talk about retiring and say things like, “just 8 more years…” I often wonder if I’ll feel like that too. I somehow see myself in the same boat as you, reading and learning and teaching without an end in sight.

  4. I love the beginning, where you describe the conversations about imagining what retirement could look like. It’s too far away for me to imagine, so it was interesting to see this career point through your eyes and imagine what it must be like to start playing with the idea, even if it’s a long way off.

  5. This is a great post, and one I can relate to. My husband retired a year and a half ago. Three weeks after, I went back to work for the first time in 20 years! It was not to get away from him or spending time with him, it was the the “perfect” job for me had become available, so I took it. After nine months, and much angst, I decided it was a toxic work environment and resigned, joining my husband as “retired.” That was October. I am finally getting used to having a more relaxed day, although we are both very busy. Our boys are not settled yet (25, 20, and 18) and we’ll revisit where to live once they have settled somewhere. In the meantime, I understand your hesitation but also thing your considerations about the future are important! My teacher friends (an I do have many) are reluctant to retire as well.

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