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Done at 55, but it wasn’t supposed to happen this way
Old 03-01-2015, 10:17 AM   #1
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Done at 55, but it wasn’t supposed to happen this way

Pulled the plug in January after a great career – challenging work, great bosses and co-workers (in the main) and financially rewarding. Had long thought I’d work for several more years and take a look at retiring after the kids got a little older. Things happen in life though, bad things sometimes, and plans have to change.

Two years ago, my wife of 29 years was diagnosed with Stage 4 pancreatic cancer. She was a SAHM and we had 2 pre-teen kids (started the family VERY late). My job was requiring 25%+ travel.

Caring for her and the kids become my priority and full time job. My employer was incredibly supportive, making immediate adjustments to my workload that allowed me to continue to contribute.

Fast forward a year, she is gone, the kids have maintained their excellent grades throughout it all and I knew I could not go back to working the way I had while raising the kids. Worked out an arrangement with my employer that allowed me to wrap up after the first of the year.

Financially, I’m fine. Not as much as I hoped to have before I quit working, but enough to live like we had been for the foreseeable future.

Will be relocating to another part of Florida when the school year is over to provide us a different lifestyle than the suburban living of S. Florida.

The adventure continues……….
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Old 03-01-2015, 10:52 AM   #2
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Very sorry for your loss - something many of us have contemplated as one of our worse fears. For me personally, a fear of serious health issues was one of the key drivers for retiring earlier than I had previously planned. I wish you and your kids the very best.
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Old 03-01-2015, 10:59 AM   #3
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I applaud your positive attitude, which comes through in your post. And, yes, the adventure will continue...
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Old 03-01-2015, 11:54 AM   #4
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Heartbreaking yet filled with hope. Your children will cherish the attention you are able to now give them.


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Old 03-01-2015, 12:20 PM   #5
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Wow FlaGator, I see situations like yours everyday in my practice and in fact, like so many others, one of the prime reasons for pursuing FI early enough to enjoy some of the fruits of my labor. I am sorry for the loss of your beloved.


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We are moving from NY to SWfl in July!!! I am retiring at the end of March 2015
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Old 03-01-2015, 12:35 PM   #6
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So sorry for your loss. While everyone on this forum wants to reach FIRE, no one wants to for that reason. Your positive attitude shines through in your post. Wishing you nothing but the best for you and your children in this next chapter in your lives.
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Old 03-01-2015, 12:42 PM   #7
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FlaGator, very sorry for your loss. Health issues, or fear of them advanced my retirement. Your wife sure picked a great father for your kids. Best wishes.
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Old 03-01-2015, 03:00 PM   #8
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Have to agree with the rest, your positive outlook and putting priority on family and children will have all of this work out good for you. I am glad that you are not defining your life by work. Work enables us to have the things in life that we need. Fortunately you have the financial means to now be a SAHD.

Stick around and enjoy the board here. Welcome to the forum.
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Old 03-01-2015, 03:19 PM   #9
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Sorry for your loss. You sound like a GREAT Dad, focused on the welfare of your kids. Wishing you best in FIRE.
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Old 03-01-2015, 07:48 PM   #10
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Very sorry for your loss, but glad that the financial decisions you made earlier in life allow you to make the decision to dedicate your time to your kids now when they need you.
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Old 03-01-2015, 08:00 PM   #11
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OMG, sorry for your loss. Many times on this site our tales are of a humorous vein. But life's cruelties affect so many people. You seem to have a great spirit. Glad to see that your children are doing well. All the best,
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Old 03-01-2015, 08:17 PM   #12
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Great job staying positive for your children. Hopefully the next part of your journey works out well for all of you. Deepest sympathies for your lose. You were very blessed on having an understanding employer.
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Old 03-02-2015, 08:10 PM   #13
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Thanks to all for the kind words and encouragement.

I hope to be able to contribute at least as much as I have learned from this group.
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Old 03-03-2015, 05:36 PM   #14
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FlaGator, I hope I never have to deal with the situation like yours but I could only hope to act with your courage and hope for the future as it's clear your father role is now your priority, no one could fault that choice. I'm sorry for your loss and admire your actions, it's why we save the money, to use it when it counts.


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Old 03-03-2015, 06:36 PM   #15
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Powerful post. Thank you for sharing. These tragedies remind of us how precious and unpredictable life can be. I lost a close relative when he was just in his mid-40's.

I admire you and others on this site for realizing life is more than keeping up the Jones'.
Best wishes to you.
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Old 03-03-2015, 09:30 PM   #16
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So sorry for your loss. Your positive attitude is inspirational. All the best to you and your children.
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Old 03-14-2015, 12:28 PM   #17
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Gladiator,
Thank you for your post. it's inspiring. I am in a very similar boat.

After 27 years of marriage, I lost the man of my dreams to leukemia, 13 months ago. I am still devastated and trying to make halfway decent financial decisions.

God bless you and your kids.
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Old 03-15-2015, 04:52 PM   #18
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I'm so very sorry this happened.
I agree with what another person here said, your wife picked a good man to be the father of your kids.




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