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Hi from younger retiree
Old 05-19-2010, 07:14 AM   #1
Confused about dryer sheets
 
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Hi from younger retiree

Hello all. I am glad to have found this forum.
I joined the Air Force at 17 & retired 2 years ago at 42 years of age.
Retiring early had been my goal from the start.
My experience has been this:
Before I retired I had my retirement date posted on a yellow sticky on the wall in my office. Every time things got stressful I would look at it and become so excited about the future. What a dream!!
The first few month of retirement were euphoric. My family & I traveled to Europe; I spent the Summer with our daughters at our lake house. I enjoyed reading, trying out new hobbies, book discussions, yoga, did all kinds of things.

The only issue I find, is that I sometimes feel isolated. I have no peers as there is absolutely no one in the same situation as me. My friends are busy with working, family, and surviving in the rat race, and are too exhausted to get together much. Most retirees are much older than me, and the stay-at-home moms are much younger. Not that age matters but there is no one in the same situation as me that I feel I connect with.

And this sure isn't something I can vent about, as most people would love to trade their problems for mine. Too much leisure time actually gets old. While still in Tampa, I volunteered at the Ronald McDonald House, but haven't found a worthy cause here yet.
I do temp jobs once in a while just to get out and have more contact with people.
Has anyone else experienced the same? I working to snap out of it, and planning an adventurous summer with the family.
Karen
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Old 05-19-2010, 07:34 AM   #2
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there is absolutely no one in the same situation as me
Many of us are in your situation, so this is a great place to vent and try to figure things out.

You are going through the same frustrations I went through when I first ER'd in 2008, and I still experience from time to time. This ER thing is a huge change and it takes time to get really good at it, so we have to be patient.
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Old 05-19-2010, 08:52 AM   #3
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You're not alone. I found that I missed the social interaction that I had when I worked. (I now work off and on). I'm learning to be happy spending more time alone & with DW. We host more social events since we have the time and energy to get things together. I've sometimes cooked a meal for neighbors and taken it over and had it at their homes since they have little kids that need a sitter. They appreciate it and we all get some good company for a while.
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Old 05-19-2010, 09:20 AM   #4
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... there is no one in the same situation as me that I feel I connect with.
Not at all true! I went through the same experience, retiring after 29 years in law enforcement. I was surprised that after the euphoria of not having to work wore off I had a hard time finding enough to fill the days. Family and friends were still working and I plateaued with a hobby I'd enjoyed for almost 20 years. I found that one can only build and fly so many radio control model airplanes, going fishing is okay but not something I want to do all day every day, some TV is all right but too much and I'll get to be as smart as Howdy Doodie.

After almost five years of wandering around I ended up getting another job, but it is very much low-stress and has a "brutal" 3.4 mile commute; if the pavement is dry and temps are above 25 I ride a motorcycle. And if someone proves sufficiently annoying I have the freedom to walk away from it.

That last sentence makes a huge difference. Some people there still get their undies in a bunch over trivia, while I cruise on, unconcerned with the whining over petty matters. For this is contract work, this is temporary, and not something I'm making a huge personal personal investment in. And in some respects I find it interesting and entertaining from an analytical perspective - why are these people getting so tense about stuff that next month will be meaningless?

But I'm not in the midst of The "fog of work".

Most on this board here shudder at the thought of w*rking again, but for for me, right now, it seems to meet the objective. Everyone has to find their own way.

The neat part is having more options than I've ever had before.
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Old 05-19-2010, 02:09 PM   #5
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And if someone proves sufficiently annoying I have the freedom to walk away from it.

That last sentence makes a huge difference. Some people there still get their undies in a bunch over trivia, while I cruise on, unconcerned with the whining over petty matters. For this is contract work, this is temporary, and not something I'm making a huge personal personal investment in. And in some respects I find it interesting and entertaining from an analytical perspective - why are these people getting so tense about stuff that next month will be meaningless?
This is exactly what I'm looking forward to right now! When I get to a point where I don't have to work, the day will be beautiful and much less stressful!
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Old 05-19-2010, 02:54 PM   #6
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This is exactly what I'm looking forward to right now! When I get to a point where I don't have to work, the day will be beautiful and much less stressful!
Welcome Cassius King! From your avatar pic, I'm guessing you're aiming to live life a little like "The Dude"
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Old 05-19-2010, 04:33 PM   #7
Confused about dryer sheets
 
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Thanks

Wow, I am not alone after all. After reading the responses to this thread & especially reading some of the previous posts on this board, I see that many people experienced the same thing. Sometimes I get annoyed at myself for having these feelings.

I realize it's just a stage & I have to find some worthwhile productive things to do. I do think about the times I am out during lunchtime and overhear others dining on their lunch break. They are usually venting to each other about work or other co-workers. Times like that I know.......who needs it.

I think the movie, "About Schmidt" with Jack Nicholson was very realistic. He just retired and found himself wondering what his purpose then was.
Thank you for the responses. Looking forward to learning from this forum.
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Old 05-19-2010, 04:37 PM   #8
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Karen, welcome to the forum and no, you are definitely not alone.

In case you missed it here is a list of 20+ threads in the FAQ section which you may find interesting: (FAQ archive) But... what will I do all day?
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Old 05-19-2010, 05:22 PM   #9
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Welcome Cassius King! From your avatar pic, I'm guessing you're aiming to live life a little like "The Dude"
You are correct. My golf clubs, fishing pole, road trips and a nice beer are my vices.
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Old 05-19-2010, 06:35 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by karen64 View Post
The only issue I find, is that I sometimes feel isolated. I have no peers as there is absolutely no one in the same situation as me. My friends are busy with working, family, and surviving in the rat race, and are too exhausted to get together much. Most retirees are much older than me, and the stay-at-home moms are much younger. Not that age matters but there is no one in the same situation as me that I feel I connect with.
Most of us are wondering through uncharted territory. The baby boom generation and some like you are pioneers of modern ER. Your job now is your happiness. Do some research on the web about what career counselors say about finding your passion at work. Then apply those concepts to your life.

You might find some insights here:

The Phase of ER - Long Time ERers input wanted
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Old 05-30-2010, 09:53 AM   #11
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Hi, Karen.

I understand what you are saying about not meeting anyone who is in the same situation.

When you start developing your passions, you will find like minds. Even though they may not be in your (enviable) situation, they will care about the same things you care about. Gardening, boating, volunteering, education, politics, art ... there are myriad ways to connect with other people. They may not be able to empathize with your very particular situation, but put a few of them together and you'll have the friendship and connection you need.
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