I actually didn’t retire until I was 68 – that is, I didn’t apply for Social Security until that time. I continued to work until I turned 74. We decided it was time to downsize and moved into a house half the size of what we had. It’s funny how much stuff you accumulate over 24 years of living in the same place. It’s even funnier when you think you can’t part with some of those things. If you want a less complicated life, you do so and soon realize that your hoarding days continue even after you’ve gotten rid of all the excess baggage.
I stayed retired for a year and almost died of boredom. I found a theatre that was reaching out to all areas of the population and that included senior citizens. I began a time of visiting nursing homes and doing improvisation with some of the memory care patients. I also began teaching active seniors some of the basics of acting. This evolved into a separate entity which continues to grow. Three of us seniors got together and established an outlet for our creativity, by collaborating and writing a series of episodes regarding aging. There’s a ton of humor in the aging process which we share by laughing at ourselves.
When I was young, I thought retirement meant a life of ease – time to kick back and relax – a time to do some of the things you could never do when you were working. In my case, working is a necessary commodity and probably will be until I die. Not only does it provide a small supplement to Social Security Income, but it keeps my mind active and keeps me from vegetating on the couch.
Your mindset may change once you’ve retired. You might realize you didn’t plan well enough for this time. Your checkbook balance doesn’t match your desire to see the world or travel to exotic places. Your body is wearing out and you’re no longer capable of the things you once accomplished with ease. Keeping a positive attitude will give you the stamina necessary to get up each morning with purpose. Maintaining a good sense of humor will also help. Instead of dwelling on your aging, think of the alternative – kicking the bucket.
The fellow in the meme attached to this post, still has a certain amount of mischief in his being. Although it isn’t up to us beyond the age of 70 to enrage those younger than us, it makes for a good laugh once in a while. Life doesn’t end until God decides it’s the right time for us to come to our eternal home. While we’re still living, we can be sure that He’s going to remain with us through our time here and beyond.
“Even to your old age, I will be the same, and I will bear you up when you turn gray. I have made you, and I will carry you; I will sustain you and deliver you. Even to your old age and gray hairs I am he, I am he who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you.” Isaiah 46:4