My friend called very early this morning. Not to say hello, or to find out how I am doing. She called to vent. It began with her telling me how bored she has been since she retired. These were her exact words. “Don’t you just hate being retired? Well I do and I want to find a job.” After taking a few deep breaths, I told her I heard this from you before. “Remember, when we were both employed, you also hated working. In those days, you always said you couldn’t wait to retire. Well now you are. Back then you were wishing to be retired. Now you are retired, you are wishing you were working. There is no pleasing you.” “Well she said I am getting my resume redone and I am going to find a job.” My reply was. “It looks like your mind is made up, so good luck with that. Right now I am about to make a cup of some fancy coffee put my foot up and read a sultry romance novel.” I knew, by saying that I would send her into a tizzy, which it did. She said, since I have retired I am crazy, and hung up on me.
Although she ended the call, I could not get the conversation off my mind. I began to reflect on those cold winter mornings when I had to drive to work in snowstorms and expected to get to work on time. Then there were those glorious summer days when all I really wanted to do, was to putter around in my garden all day. All I could do was give the garden a sad look and off to work, I went. Now I am free to peep through the curtains on those bitterly cold days, hug myself and go back to bed or sit and read a good book with a cup of tea or coffee. Needless to say, on the summer days I am out in the garden from morning till dusk.
My Question is. Why when you are retired you are constantly asked what are you intending to do to be kept busy? A statement about how bored you are going to be immediately follows the question. I really don’t get it. Everyone is so concern about your level of boredom. Why do you have to be kept busy? For years, you were paid a salary to be busy, now you are paid a pension not to be busy. I no longer have a to do list. I now have a list of all the things I don’t want to do.
What I have learnt since I retired is to take time to relax. When there are long lines at the supermarket I smile and take a look around. I peruse through the latest tabloid magazines and chuckle at all the outlandish stuff in them. I do not have to explain to anyone why I am late coming back from lunch. I only make appointments from 12pm to 3pm. Gone are the days of very early or late appointments to accommodate my work schedule. I go to long leisurely monthly lunches with my girlfriends; sometimes we do a late lunch and an early movie.
I can only hope that my friend will find a way to enjoy her retirement or find a new purpose in her life. Maybe for her, she needs to have the routine of going somewhere each and every day. That might work for her. For me, complete retirement is best.
I am absolutely certain that my friend, after reading this blog will call to tell me off, but it’s okay that’s what friends are for.
I love being retired and truly embrace the control, I have over my what, where, when, why, and who. Think of it, God created the world in six days and retired. I never heard of God working again. Have you? If it’s good for God, it’s good for me.