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Viet Vet
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Facing Retirement
03/04/12 at 10:46:52
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An Autumn to Anticipate


I knew it was coming a few years ago. I gave up fighting the waistline and playing basketball and sports in general. It wasn't so much the physical stress that affected me as much as the mental.

I was not ready for the mental slowdown. I turned 65 without much fanfare, but with a nice birthday party, good fellowship with friends, and my wife of 40 years.

My, how the time has flown by. Seems like only yesterday I was at the top of my game, showing others how to succeed and teaching others how to live life to its fullest. Now I'm being shown ~very graciously ~ by others how to sit back and let someone else take control of life's challenges.

I sit in amazement at the computers and applications that I see the younger generation interact with so effortlessly, while I struggle with email and Facebook and Smartphones.
I recall, much to the youngsters' chagrin, how I made it through life without any of these fancy gadgets......but deep inside, wish I could handle the Information Age with as much ease as they do.
I am forced by my physical limitations, to stand down, while my mind still tries to handle situations like I did 40 years ago.

Am I ready to give up? NO WAY!

I am ready to enter a new phase of life. It requires walking away from all of the electronic gadgets and lifestyle that I have grown dependent upon. It requires walking TOWARD my children, grandchildren and wife to rediscover the fun-filled weekends, the evening games, the holding of hands, and the enjoyment I get when I just stay close to her.

After all, she is the one who gave me meaning and direction when I met her. We have raised her three children, adopted four more, and fostered several more. What a fulfillment I have received from marrying her.

All of my life was planned to work toward retirement. Now, slowing down has to be planned as well. Not a big fear ~ just a small one ~ of being left out. I watched as my parents aged and then passed on. I watched as Robert & Mary, who were so vibrant and independent, slowly wind their life down in a nursing home.

How many times I prayed they would pass on without the indignity of nursing home care that is inevitable.

The problem is learning to stay busy and focused on purpose. I must adapt and change over to a different mindset and mental strategy. I must find purpose when it is not evident, keep applying myself to things I can still do and be good at.

I am good at building relationships; I am good at loving to be around my grandchildren; and I am still a good parent to my own children.

I am good at enjoying the day. Since I haven't crashed, I suppose I am a good pilot......good at fishing, picnics, having a good time ~ just good at living.

When I think through my retirement, I am happy to have made it this far. I am looking forward to entering the autumn of my life.

Winter is still some time away, and I plan to enjoy this autumn to the fullest. I may be older and slower, but I am more matured and have had more experience in having fun and enjoying life than my younger friends.

I think I will go find the love of my life and see what mischief I can get into. Yes, sir, I think this is one autumn I am looking foward to.

Viet Vet

  
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nanny
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Re: Facing Retirement
Reply #1 - 03/04/12 at 22:25:43
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It sounds like you have a very good plan for the rest of your life and it also sounds as if you have all the right priorities. May God bless you and your family. Oh and thank you so much for your service to all of us as well as our country. Smiley
  

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; the courage to change the things I can; and the wisdom to know the difference.
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Viet Vet
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Re: Facing Retirement
Reply #2 - 03/05/12 at 07:39:01
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You are very welcome. Thanks for the kind words.

Viet Vet Smiley
  
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Re: Facing Retirement
Reply #3 - 05/14/12 at 22:41:30
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I have met only one man who said he was sorry that he retired.  And he was having a bad day on the golf course. Wink
  
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