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All You OMYers and "Afraid to Jumpers" Read On
Old 10-13-2016, 04:01 PM   #1
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All You OMYers and "Afraid to Jumpers" Read On

This is a cautionary tale for all or you OMYers, "Able, but afraid to make the jump"-ers and "I'm afraid I'll be bored" types.

Here goes:
My brother and only sibling, (never married, age 61) came to me about 6 months ago. He'd been increasingly unhappy at work and was just getting sick of it. We went through his finances and I showed him how he was more than able to retire asap; his CPA agreed as well.

He decided that he would retire on December 31 of this year.

So, with a little less than 4 months before RE...he had a massive stroke on September 11. His right side is currently non-functioning and he mostly speaks only gibberish.

This is a guy who, at 61, still does Iron-Mans, 3 Triathlons a year and swims 25 laps each morning at the Y. A recently developed A-Fib did him in.

Because of his otherwise fantastic physical condition doctors are very optimistic for what they call "a return to a good quality of life"(whatever that means). He's also at one of the top 5 rehab facilities in the country (right here in Boston) and he's highly, highly motivated. All good things in his favor.

My point in sharing all of this is this: If you know that you have the finances to RE, if you've run the numbers a 100 times and you're sure you can do it but 'something' is holding you back....stop waiting.

Life is short, we only have so many days and tomorrow isn't a guarantee.

All my brother wanted to do was play golf every day. He may/may not ever get to do that now and he has a long, long road to travel before he gets to that first tee, if at all.

Please let me finish by saying that this is not a request for sympathy. (But those inclined toward sending prayers and/or good energy are most welcome). I just hope that someone who's been sitting on the fence might read this and that this might be the final straw that they needed.

If you have the resources and the only thing holding you back is fear...please consider.

Peace my friends.
marko
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Old 10-13-2016, 04:04 PM   #2
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Well said.
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Old 10-13-2016, 04:14 PM   #3
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marko, thanks for that post.
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Old 10-13-2016, 04:18 PM   #4
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Thanks for the reality check. I am OMY myself at age 50.
I had coffee this afternoon with my Uncle who had a serious stroke about a year ago, in his mid sixties. May your brothers' recovery go as well as his.
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Old 10-13-2016, 04:18 PM   #5
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Amen.
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Old 10-13-2016, 04:18 PM   #6
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So sorry to read this, Marko. I hope his company health insurance is covering all the rehab costs (looking for a glimmer of a silver lining for him) and it's early days yet, so hang in there.
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Old 10-13-2016, 04:30 PM   #7
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Thanks for sharing this marco
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Old 10-13-2016, 04:35 PM   #8
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Heck yeah. One of the reasons I decided 33 was a good age for me and I didn't need mega millions. No family history to suggest I won't make it to age 70 or 80 in relatively good health (then die of a heart attack apparently :/ ), but you never know when something silly could come along and incapacitate you, disable you, and/or severely reduce your quality of life. Looking at SS disability actuarial tables shows that the risk of this non-fatal but quality of life reducing event increases with age.

I'd rather enjoy several decades of good health and enjoyment with a 5% (per firecalc) chance I might need to tighten the budget or pick up some minor employment than keep working and face a greater than 5% chance of becoming disabled by age 60.
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Old 10-13-2016, 05:10 PM   #9
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Sorry to hear about your brother.

I left in March of this year, a couple months before turning 54. I'm living off savings as I have to wait until my 55th birthday to get an unreduced pension. Just before I left, a co-worker said "Why do you want to retire early? You're still young and healthy."

My response: "That's exactly why I'm leaving....so I can enjoy retirement while still young and healthy."

I've gone to too many funerals of people that never made it to retirement. If you can retire, then go for it and don't look back.
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Old 10-13-2016, 05:13 PM   #10
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Thanks for sharing, Marko. I'm about 2 years away from ER and already feel a little nervous about it. If I can go, I should go, 'cause ya never know!

Good thing your brother was physically and financially prepared for that unwelcome detour. My brother had neither financial nor physical fitness going for him when an undiscovered aneurysm in his brain started to leak, landing him in the ICU for a month. He was 51, but had virtually no savings and no foundation of mental and physical health to fall back on. Too many years of letting his impulsive nature control his life. Seven years later he is homeless.
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Old 10-13-2016, 05:53 PM   #11
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Thank you for sharing this marco.

Well wishes for a good recovery for your brother!
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Old 10-13-2016, 07:14 PM   #12
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An excessive amount of planning, including listing activities during retirement (most tho not all were unnecessary as I am very busy with whatever the heck I feel like doing and have barely dented the list) plus a good bit of budget padding prevented any OMY nonsense for me. Hopefully, your brother's story will be a sufficient nudge for any for whom even all that is not quite enough. Prayers for your brother, marko, from me and my church family.
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Old 10-13-2016, 07:32 PM   #13
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Sorry to hear about your brother and I wish him the best on his recovery. Unfortunately, I know a number of individuals who have suffered similar or worse medical events shortly before or shortly after their retirements.

Unless you are the type that is just in love with your job, once you are safely FI, then "get the hell out of Dodge".

As I've mention on this forum a few times, I suffered from the OMY syndrome for at least two years longer than I should have. Even though I've been reasonably health so far in retirement, I would gladly give back the extra money I accumulated to get those last two years back.
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Old 10-13-2016, 07:56 PM   #14
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Thanks, Marco. This story is a good warning. I am so thankful that a doctor discovered my Atrial Flutter and that I am on 2 types of medications to take care of potential problems, hopefully. I will be praying that your brother makes a recovery and can enjoy the rest of his life.
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Old 10-13-2016, 11:04 PM   #15
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I hope your brother makes a full recovery and gets to play the golf games he imagined.

Thanks for sharing his story.
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Old 10-13-2016, 11:17 PM   #16
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Hope your brother's recovery goes well and he can get back to enjoy some retirement. His story hits very close to home for me. My father had a severe stroke at 60, about 9 months before his planned retirement. He remained permanently disabled and took a medical-forced retirement. Never did get to do the things he and Mom had planned for retirement due to his disability and required care. This is one of the main reasons I have for getting out of work and retiring myself.
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Old 10-14-2016, 07:41 AM   #17
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Sorry to read this and sending good vibes.

DH was fighting back pains and HMSN, a genetic issue that could become similar to MS.
He retired 3 years ago at 61 and I joined to spend more time together.
More money will not buy us more time and quality of life.
He is feeling better than ever.
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Old 10-14-2016, 01:12 PM   #18
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Marco, sorry to hear about your brother. Wish him a speedy recovery.
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Old 10-14-2016, 02:09 PM   #19
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Marko,
Thanks for the post and best wishes for a good outcome/recovery for your brother.

I am a OMYer (actually 15 months) at age 55. My long term plan was always to go out at 55, and the only reasons I'm staying on now are to support my boss (a great guy) through a rough transition after our megacorp was acquired by gigacorp, and also to be able claim 30 years at one company (I know, a dumb sentimental reason).

My wife started drawing a small pension this year, and we are set financially. But I've been able to bring myself to the point of pulling the plug so far. Your post has me seriously reconsidering.

Regards,
Wino
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Old 10-14-2016, 02:48 PM   #20
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First, I hope your brother makes a strong recovery. And thank you for this post.
I am really on the fence about making the jump. And stories like this really make you stop and think.

I went to a funeral for my friends husband a couple of weeks ago. He was only 57. He was very healthy, worked out 4-5 days a week, loved to hunt and fish. Not overweight, both parents still alive and healthy. Complications from pneumonia. Had recently retired from a federal job - had a great pension. It is just so sad.

Our plan is 17 1/2 months to go. Although - I think we are good to go now. But 4/1/2018 has always been our date. May need to reconsider.
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