Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
51 and a health issue has made me want to take the plunge
Old 11-03-2013, 04:01 AM   #1
Dryer sheet wannabe
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: England
Posts: 18
51 and a health issue has made me want to take the plunge

I've been trying to take ER for the last few years, but have struggled to pluck up the courage to cut the ties that bind.

Last year I had a health issue and I've been struggling to recover ever since. To be honest, I think the reason I am struggling to regain my health properly is that I just can't cope with the stress and pressure of work any more. Oh to be 25 again.

I've just turned 51 and I am determined to do it this year. The DW and I are pretty much FI, but it still worries me that enough is never enough. The fear of running out scares me.

And I'm a very conservative investor too. That has paid of well when things went bad in 2008, but I didn't ride the recent increases in the market as we're pretty much all in cash or very conservative investments. I worry that our nest egg will run out if we don't take on a little more risk.

To all of you who have already taken the plunge - I admire you - and to those like me who want to take ER - I am with you all the way
__________________

__________________
Paulio is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 11-03-2013, 06:53 AM   #2
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
pb4uski's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Vermont & Sarasota, FL
Posts: 16,410
For long periods of time like retirement that being conservative in your investments increases risk rather than decreases risk. For a long period like retirement you need 40% or more in equities to help you keep pace with inflation.

Some conquer their fear of investing in equities by writing down a personal investment policy and sticking to it. Good luck.
__________________

__________________
If something cannot endure laughter.... it cannot endure.
Patience is the art of concealing your impatience.
Slow and steady wins the race.
pb4uski is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-03-2013, 07:41 AM   #3
Dryer sheet aficionado
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Merseyside
Posts: 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Paulio View Post
I've been trying to take ER for the last few years, but have struggled to pluck up the courage to cut the ties that bind.

Last year I had a health issue and I've been struggling to recover ever since. To be honest, I think the reason I am struggling to regain my health properly is that I just can't cope with the stress and pressure of work any more. Oh to be 25 again.

I've just turned 51 and I am determined to do it this year. The DW and I are pretty much FI, but it still worries me that enough is never enough. The fear of running out scares me.

And I'm a very conservative investor too. That has paid of well when things went bad in 2008, but I didn't ride the recent increases in the market as we're pretty much all in cash or very conservative investments. I worry that our nest egg will run out if we don't take on a little more risk.

To all of you who have already taken the plunge - I admire you - and to those like me who want to take ER - I am with you all the way
I'm 51 too and retiring due to a health issue. I think the health issue has caused me difficulty coping for four + years and even half time work for two and a half years didn't help. Luckily I will get a good pension and have been practicing LBYM for twelve months. Before this we were investing in property so have been LBYM for about ten years.


Good luck to you, I can't advise on your investments but suggest you take time to recover. I'm awaiting surgery and expect my first twelve months to be spent recovering/ gradually regaining function.
__________________
UkGP51 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-05-2013, 04:15 PM   #4
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Maple Valley
Posts: 465
I just had open heart surgery 5 months ago to replace my aortic valve. I am 53. I retired 3 years ago at 50. My personal take is if you can do, go for it. I have not regretted retiring early at all. On the other hand, getting my husband who turns 56 this week has not reached that point yet. I keep pointing out to him, you can do it now. So I go about my retirement doing what I want. I wish you both well with your health problems and I say you only go around once. So if you are FI do it.
__________________
kimcdougc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-05-2013, 04:21 PM   #5
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 3,697
Every once in a while I think about going back to work. The next day I read about someone I went to school with in the obits. I hear about others who have become very sick and cannot enjoy life anymore.

Not to be glib, but your illness could turn out to be a blessing; a message that life is short and the goal is enjoy our lives as best we can.

If you're in the 'we are FI but enough is never enough' mindset, maybe it's time to reassess that thinking.

Best of luck on your health.
__________________
Living well is the best revenge!
Retired @ 52 in 2005
marko is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-07-2013, 04:58 AM   #6
Full time employment: Posting here.
Badger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 825
I retired a little over a year ago at 64 mainly because I enjoyed what I was doing. The plan was to retire at 66 and backpack around Europe and generally travel and lead the active life I was used to. Three years and three surgeries ago (the last being a lumbar fusion) left me on pain meds with a slight paralysis in my right leg that put a crimp in those plans.

Unfortunately there are no "Do Overs" so the option is to switch gears and figure out alternatives. The folks here can help guide you to best understand your finances so you can enjoy retirement. I started with reading through most of the posts on the forum. There are quite a few so it will take some time. You will probably have a long list of questions to ask afterwards but this is a great place to learn how to make it all work.

Ask questions and keep moving.

Cheers!
__________________
Badger is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-07-2013, 06:24 AM   #7
Dryer sheet wannabe
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: England
Posts: 18
I love you guys and gals!

The advice above was just what I needed to hear. You've given my motivation a real boost and I feel this time I will follow through are go for ER.

I've been reading lots of the posts on the forum. One of them suggested a book called 'Millionaire Teacher'. I ordered it last week and have been reading it from cover to cover since it arrived on Monday. What an amazing book. I wish I'd read it when I was 18. I've been urging my two sons to read it ever since.

I feel the book coupled with the knowledge I'm picking up on this forum, plus the motivation and encouragement from the posts above has got me on the right path.

Thanks again. I REALLY appreciate it.
__________________
Paulio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-07-2013, 06:34 AM   #8
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
NW-Bound's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 19,401
Hi!

I thought I was enjoying my part-time work last year, when my young adult son came down with a weird infection that could have cost him his life. Though he fully recovered, that made me think about myself, and I decided to stop work for real when some work politics arose.

Then, earlier this year, I was diagnosed with a serious illness. I am doing OK now after surgeries, but having to work during or after the treatment would make it that much worse.

Yes, one must know when one has enough for a comfortable life, and to overcome the OMY ("One more year") syndrome, particularly when already in the 50s or 60s.
__________________
NW-Bound is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-11-2013, 12:33 PM   #9
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 377
I had a heart attack and kidney failure at 50, I had been caring for my elderly mother at that point for over 8 years. The stress and physical pain of being the only caregiver, along with a full time job, took its toll. My mom died in January and I quickly had an lightbulb moment, what am I waiting for? I will have a pension in a month and a half when I retire and paid medical. I won't be rich but I'll be rich in time and less stress. Sometimes there is a reason for everything.
__________________
LinCella is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2013, 04:36 AM   #10
Dryer sheet wannabe
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: England
Posts: 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by linny727 View Post
I had a heart attack and kidney failure at 50, I had been caring for my elderly mother at that point for over 8 years. The stress and physical pain of being the only caregiver, along with a full time job, took its toll. My mom died in January and I quickly had an lightbulb moment, what am I waiting for? I will have a pension in a month and a half when I retire and paid medical. I won't be rich but I'll be rich in time and less stress. Sometimes there is a reason for everything.
I think you are totally right when you say "sometimes there is a reason for everything".

I have come to the same conclusion with my health challenge, which has been going on for over eighteen months. It has made me make some serious lifechanges, and I am sure I would not have made those changes had this not happened.

In a way I feel blessed as I feel like I came to a fork in the path. I could either choose to carry on down the same road, or I could take the turning off to a totally different life.

I met with the accountant yesterday and he assures me that I do have more than enough to retire and he even encouraged me to go for it. I really needed to hear it from someone else, so the comments on this board (thank you to you all) and the accountant have really made me feel comfortable about the decision.

Thanks!
__________________
Paulio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-15-2013, 12:17 PM   #11
Dryer sheet wannabe
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Seattle
Posts: 20
Congratulations, Paulio! I think you won't regret it.

I am also 51, and had some serious health issues a couple of years back which reinforced my desire to RE. I actually love my j*b, but my treatment made it hard to perform my duties the way I felt I should. My employers were supportive during my health problems, for which I am grateful. But after scaling back my duties, and then my hours, I am ready to go.

I see you are from England, so this won't apply, but I was just waiting for the ACA to kick in (pre-existing conditions) and now that it has I can't see any reason to stay. My last day at work is Dec. 5.

I know when I tell people I am retiring, they worry it means I've had a recurrence. That is exactly the scenario I was motivated to avoid. I'm retiring now because, at least for the time being, I am healthy, and planning to make the most of it!
__________________
NW-Reader is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-15-2013, 12:39 PM   #12
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 377
I just found out that the townhouse co-op I am wanting to move to has a waiting list of 22 people. It's not a straight 22 because people can turn down a unit, but it's looking like my plan to move is to be put on hold. Having said that I thought perhaps I should just stay at work, but as my friend pointed out to me, with my health issues, retiring is for me is not about just moving and starting a new life. My new life starts as soon as I retire and start working on my health again. The move will still be there but my health may not. Sure, working would give me more of a pension but time and freedom are worth so much more. I have 23 more work days and even those days are long and feel that go on forever. With my own heart attack and my mother's death, I decided to go for it and not be scared - that things will work out with some planning.
__________________
LinCella is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-15-2013, 05:39 PM   #13
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
imoldernu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Peru
Posts: 4,616
Quote:
Originally Posted by Paulio View Post
I've been trying to take ER for the last few years, but have struggled to pluck up the courage to cut the ties that bind.

Last year I had a health issue and I've been struggling to recover ever since. To be honest, I think the reason I am struggling to regain my health properly is that I just can't cope with the stress and pressure of work any more. Oh to be 25 again.

I've just turned 51 and I am determined to do it this year. The DW and I are pretty much FI, but it still worries me that enough is never enough. The fear of running out scares me.

And I'm a very conservative investor too. That has paid of well when things went bad in 2008, but I didn't ride the recent increases in the market as we're pretty much all in cash or very conservative investments. I worry that our nest egg will run out if we don't take on a little more risk.

To all of you who have already taken the plunge - I admire you - and to those like me who want to take ER - I am with you all the way
Sorry about the health part... certainly rings a bell with me, as it was a health issue that made me make the decision at age 53... absolutely no regrets, and even though the money worries were real, it all worked out well. A little belt tightening in the early years, but now, 24 years later, still on track and very happy. You may want to take a peek at this older thread. Not much on investing, but more on the other parts that change when you go on to this new adventure.

Sharing 23 years of Frugal Retirement

Best of luck... and keep in mind, you only come this way once...
__________________
imoldernu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-15-2013, 06:08 PM   #14
Full time employment: Posting here.
Tailgate's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Texas
Posts: 881
Quote:
Originally Posted by imoldernu View Post
Sorry about the health part... certainly rings a bell with me, as it was a health issue that made me make the decision at age 53... absolutely no regrets, and even though the money worries were real, it all worked out well. A little belt tightening in the early years, but now, 24 years later, still on track and very happy. You may want to take a peek at this older thread. Not much on investing, but more on the other parts that change when you go on to this new adventure.

Sharing 23 years of Frugal Retirement

Best of luck... and keep in mind, you only come this way once...
+1 on reading this thread... (imoldernu, one of the better posts that I've found on this forum.. appreciative of your insight and experience!)
__________________
Tailgate is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-15-2013, 06:27 PM   #15
Full time employment: Posting here.
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: seattle
Posts: 643
As you are prepared money wise, you can work out the fine tuning of the portfolio with some study. Lots of smart people and good resources here. Fortunately,the economies of most places have at least stopped bleeding, so that has a diminished effect compared to a few years ago.

One thing I personally had to reconcile when health issues [heart] cropped up at age 58 was to let the career go and admit that I had to change some things. Fortunately, I was nominally FI at that point. My wife was totally supportive and remains so. It was hard nevertheless to give up a large measure of personal identity that was contained within the career. I wasn't doing this on my schedule, nature simply stepped in and moved the clock hands so I had to roll with it.

Some chronic diseases carry the invitation to some observers to blame the sick person. I have no idea if your circumstance is subject to this, but if so, try hard to stem that effect. It can come out of the strangest social circumstances and blindside you.

Above all, enjoy your retirement.
__________________
bld999 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-24-2013, 06:36 AM   #16
Dryer sheet wannabe
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: England
Posts: 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by linny727 View Post
My new life starts as soon as I retire and start working on my health again. The move will still be there but my health may not.
Well put!

I think you're totally right about needing to work on your health. It puts everything into perspective, doesn't it?

Good luck with everything and keep in touch so we all know how it goes. Hopefully really well!!!
__________________
Paulio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-24-2013, 06:42 AM   #17
Dryer sheet wannabe
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: England
Posts: 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by imoldernu View Post
Sorry about the health part... certainly rings a bell with me, as it was a health issue that made me make the decision at age 53... absolutely no regrets, and even though the money worries were real, it all worked out well. A little belt tightening in the early years, but now, 24 years later, still on track and very happy. You may want to take a peek at this older thread. Not much on investing, but more on the other parts that change when you go on to this new adventure.

Sharing 23 years of Frugal Retirement

Best of luck... and keep in mind, you only come this way once...
I've been checking out that thread you recommended. A huge thanks for that. It makes very inspirational reading, and makes me realize that where there's a will there is always a way.

I'd suggest anyone who is sat on the fence reads that thread.

I even liked your novel way of working out how much you have to live on. It's simplicity makes total sense.
__________________
Paulio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-24-2013, 06:49 AM   #18
Dryer sheet wannabe
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: England
Posts: 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by bld999 View Post
As you are prepared money wise, you can work out the fine tuning of the portfolio with some study. Lots of smart people and good resources here. Fortunately,the economies of most places have at least stopped bleeding, so that has a diminished effect compared to a few years ago.

One thing I personally had to reconcile when health issues [heart] cropped up at age 58 was to let the career go and admit that I had to change some things. Fortunately, I was nominally FI at that point. My wife was totally supportive and remains so. It was hard nevertheless to give up a large measure of personal identity that was contained within the career. I wasn't doing this on my schedule, nature simply stepped in and moved the clock hands so I had to roll with it.

Some chronic diseases carry the invitation to some observers to blame the sick person. I have no idea if your circumstance is subject to this, but if so, try hard to stem that effect. It can come out of the strangest social circumstances and blindside you.

Above all, enjoy your retirement.
You've hit a nail on the head when you mention personal identity. I've had my own businesses pretty much since graduating, and so much of what I am stems from that identity.

Looking at it rationally I realize that identity should not be important, and I need to move past that to a whole new identity, but it isn't always easy when you're so embroiled in it.

Also, on the money front, I had hard times when I was younger, and I suppose there's a fear of returning to that. Logic and a spreadsheet tells me that this won't be the case, but these fears still lurk around in the subconscious.

Reading the comments on this thread, and the forum as a whole, have really opened my eyes and realized that the best way forward is DEFINITELY to take ER and move forward with a smile on my face.

Like you, my wife is totally supportive. I wish I had her easy manner and didn't over-think these things as much as I do.

Thanks to you guys and gals I'm understanding that sometimes you just need to realize that the fat lady has sung (I'm not referring to the wife!) and that it is time to call it a day, and move on to the next phase of life.
__________________
Paulio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-24-2013, 05:21 PM   #19
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 430
One never knows how much money is enough. You just have to use your feeling on this decision. I have made some good moves and bad in my life. So far the best one of all is leaving the workplace. I am not in the age group most here are so me retiring was a no brainer. Good luck. I think what ever you decide will be the right thing. Look at it this way. You can always go back. oldtrig
__________________

__________________
oldtrig is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:42 PM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.