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One Year Retirement Reflections
Old 08-30-2015, 11:13 PM   #1
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One Year Retirement Reflections

DH is still working until 6/2016, but I retired on 8/1/2014. So, I have experienced a year of ER (retired on 8/1/15 at 56 YO).
I retired about 18 months early so I could take care of my Mom. It was a great decision as my Mom passed away unexpectedly 30 days after I retired. I was her executor and had spent the past four years helping her with finances and other such things.
Anyway, spent the first 12 months of ER dealing with the estate and almost to the finish line!
I have been able to enjoy many of the things that I looked forward to in retirement, in fact, I find it interesting that time is passing by much too quickly. I have so much I want to do!
Anyway, I guess what I want to share is that I don't miss work. At times I do feel a bit decadent with my regard to time, but I have also been able to indulge in a June mother/daughter trip to Ireland, and was also very much involved in her August wedding. I've been able to participate in a women's golf league, graduate from a Glacier Travel Class and participate in awesome mountain climbs, hikes and backpack trips this summer.
What surprises me is that I still don't feel like I have the been able to do everything that I'f thought I'd be able to do! Haven't been able to do the biking and kayaking I envisioned.
DH retires next summer and we plan to sell the main house freeing up time and expenses, so things will continue to evolve. Lots of travel plans
I guess my message is that retirement is an evolving process. I have lots of people time and alone time. I haven't had the time to miss working and look forward to all that comes!
Life is good!
So thankful for discovering this forum years ago when I still had time to financially tweak our plan retirement!


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Old 08-31-2015, 12:33 AM   #2
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Hi Dog,

Sorry about the loss of your mom. It's good to hear that you are almost done with the estate and hopefully ER made things a little less crazy. Many of my friends are dealing with this now or soon will be.

DW and I been ER'd only 6 months, but I agree in that we don't miss w*rk either. I've also arrived at the conclusion that retirement is an evolving process. After all, we spent decades in school preparing for w*rk and then decades at w*rk preparing for retirement. So I suspect that retirement, early or otherwise, may also take years or even decades to fully master :-) The good thing is that with ER, we have a big head start on almost everyone else. This is especially important if we want to enjoy an active lifestyle.

I too live hiking, backpacking, biking, and kayaking. Unfortunately, I don't backpack anymore. I don't know if DW and I have the toughness for the physical rigors anymore. Not backpacking is one of my few life regrets. Fortunately, we still kayak and bike, although not at the level we did 10 years ago. I do miss our more hardcore adventure trips. We're getting soft due to sundry physical and emotional reasons (excuses?)

So I greatly admire your mountain & backpacking trips. Keep doing it as long as you can!

Do you and DH typically go on backpacking, biking, and kayaking together or do you rely on other friends? We belong to a sailing & kayaking club and find that many, even most, spouses, are often less interested or even strongly disinterested.
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Old 08-31-2015, 04:57 AM   #3
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Sorry to hear about your Mom. Good that you have the estate almost wrapped up, my sister & I are in the midst of same.

As for your retirement experience, you're off to a great start, and it sounds very familiar - 'decadent with time' especially. After four years, I've also expanded activities, but still have others I haven't gotten to yet - that's as it should be. Hope you never have enough time, and never run out of interesting things to do.

Quote:
I guess my message is that retirement is an evolving process.
Life is an evolving process, why would retirement be any different?
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Old 08-31-2015, 07:16 AM   #4
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you guys are encouraging...sort of anyway. I've been retired 4 months today. I do not miss work at all but i do miss PEOPLE. i'M hoping I can very soon adapt...
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Old 08-31-2015, 07:48 AM   #5
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I am at 6 months ER as of today. I find, like Dog the OP, that I've been gradually evolving, and that the evolution ain't over yet.

I had a certain set fantasy about what my ER would look like. Fortunately, actual ER resembles that dream ER. But not exactly.

1. Thought I'd miss the off*ce occasionally. Not even once, not an iota.
2. While I am working out and taking care of myself, my energy level ain't what it was when I was 34 (I'm 54). So I am not getting down my "to-do" list as fast as I'd hoped. No matter. I have just needed to recalibrate my expectations and timing a bit.
3. I thought I'd miss people a lot. Very occasionally, I do. But by playing a lot of music (Pandora, iTunes, Accuradio), by texting friends still chained to their desks, and by romping with my dogs, I don't really feel lonely very much. I try to "enjoy the silence," as Depeche Mode used to sing.
4. I find, somewhat annoyingly, that all w*orkers think I am the best volunteer for their cause. I've been asked to join a couple of boards ("no thanks -- too busy"). I have also been implored to volunteer for any and all extended-family-related tasks because I'm allegedly swimming in free time. But I don't have much to spare, as stated above. I have so many projects going on (gym, working on my house, travel, taking art classes, etc.) that every day, I look up and it's 6pm already.
5. I would ER at the same age, at the same time and as planned, in a heartbeat. I tell others at the office who have since announced retirement: "Come on in, the water's warm!"
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Old 08-31-2015, 08:28 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kitesurfer2 View Post
you guys are encouraging...sort of anyway. I've been retired 4 months today. I do not miss work at all but i do miss PEOPLE. i'M hoping I can very soon adapt...
I found the same. I enjoy alone time, but I enjoy interacting with live people (online isn't a substitute IMO) too. I don't miss my job/career, but I do miss the social interaction with many of my former co-workers.

So I have simply forced myself to join in more often than not - I came to that conclusion before I retired. Unless it's an activity/opportunity I dislike from experience, I join in now. If I am on the fence, I err on the side of joining in. The more I 'take a chance on joining in, the easier it becomes. What's the worst that can happen, I don't like, so I leave or don't go back - nothing ventured, nothing gained. Joining in has enriched my retirement so far...
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Old 08-31-2015, 09:28 AM   #7
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I'm a few weeks from my first year ER-anniversary.

I have no trouble saying that it's been the best year of my adult life and blown away the already high expectations I had for my life without employment.

Not sure yet if I am going to do a big "impressions of 1st year of ER" post myself.
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Old 08-31-2015, 10:41 AM   #8
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Hi FreeBear,
Unfortunately DH is strictly limited to activities that don't stress his heart rate, so I do hiking, biking, kayaking and backpacking with groups I have joined or with friends. Thankfully he loves golf and is still permitted to play - the reason I joined a league so that I can improve my game so we can play together when he retires.
He has ventricular tachycardia which required a defibrillator implant and icky medication.
It definitely changed our vision of our retirement, but we are adapting. He is counting the days until he can retire next June!


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Old 08-31-2015, 10:46 AM   #9
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I found the same. I enjoy alone time, but I enjoy interacting with live people (online isn't a substitute IMO) too. I don't miss my job/career, but I do miss the social interaction with many of my former co-workers.

So I have simply forced myself to join in more often than not - I came to that conclusion before I retired. Unless it's an activity/opportunity I dislike from experience, I join in now. If I am on the fence, I err on the side of joining in. The more I 'take a chance on joining in, the easier it becomes. What's the worst that can happen, I don't like, so I leave or don't go back - nothing ventured, nothing gained. Joining in has enriched my retirement so far...
+1 When w*rking, one is forced to interact with a certain group of people. When retired, one can choose whom to interact with. Along with that comes the responsibility of meeting such people (if the relationships weren't already established), but the quality of the interactions is so much better since you're doing it on your own terms.

I'm also a strong proponent and just trying things where you will meet people and/or develop a new interest. If it grabs you, stick with it. If it doesn't, drop it.
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Old 08-31-2015, 10:52 AM   #10
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3 1/2 months now. Too much to do and I realize now there will never be enough time to do it all. Only "decadent" things I do are my morning mocha at my favorite deserted coffee house watching the day begin, and coffee while studying in the afternoons elsewhere. Still go to bed same time, get up same time, with some short daytime naps occasionally.

I have now divided retirement into two aspects: the quantitative and the qualitative. One of the smartest things I did in preparation of FIRE was intensively studying the quantitative aspect, such that I have no worries regarding money. I now waste no time reading posts here and on the BH site regarding money as they all relate to where the market is going, and other such noise. No matter what the market does, I will die with more money than I know what to do with.

I am now in the qualitative phase, as in of the so many things I could do, what do I want to do. In designing this new life, I am also evaluating people, places, and things, and cutting out any that do not add value. What's been extremely helpful is reading blogs of people who have been retired for several years, reading about the phases they went through, and following the many links that contain a plethora of information regarding what's possible in retirement. From there, reflecting and designing a preferred future.

Bored?? If I wanted to slow down I'd go back to work.
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Old 08-31-2015, 11:32 AM   #11
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Congrats Dog on your 1st year anniversary, and condolences on the loss of your mom. Sounds like you're enjoying retirement - it helps that you spend your time backpacking, biking and kayaking. I'm at 16 months and I try to do at least one of those 3 every day. But backpacking for me means day hiking with a backpack for water, snacks and my camera.
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Old 08-31-2015, 11:51 AM   #12
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This is 1 year for me too.
I discover retirement is a "long process" not a destination.
I was 64 when I quit. I do not miss work at all. I enjoyed the time and freedom to do some travel, hobbies, and family trips. I also devote daily time going to the gym and reading about investments. I manage my own money.
I also discover, that there are stuff that does not happen right away. I first decided to move, but I just found out that housing is quite expensive and competitive where I want to go. I am looking for alternatives such as renting and another destination. Good luck.
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Old 08-31-2015, 03:26 PM   #13
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Dog,

Congratulations on your ER and condolences on Mom. I am now at the 5 month mark of ER at age 49 myself and DW and I are amazed too that we look up at the clock and find the whole day is dead and gone! We are absolutely LOVING our ER. We do not miss the office at all. In fact, I love not dealing with people all day. When you are in a service industry your whole life, peace and quiet is just what this doctor ordered!

Good luck.

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Old 08-31-2015, 08:17 PM   #14
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I have been able to enjoy many of the things that I looked forward to in retirement, in fact, I find it interesting that time is passing by much too quickly. I have so much I want to do!
This is a common experience, I think. After 5 1/2 years of retirement, I find that I still don't have time to do all the things I'd like to do (and I've come to realize that that's okay). I would have found that hard to believe prior to retirement (since it seems like there should be SO much time to do whatever you want), but it doesn't work out that way. I still do the things I really want to do, and enjoy those things immensely, but I know now that it's not important that I do everything I envisioned doing before I retired. It's perfectly okay to take a day off now and then (okay, maybe more often than that )
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Old 08-31-2015, 09:56 PM   #15
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I retired Jan 15, 2014 and so far not doing well at it. I sleep odd hours and get nothing done, play too many games online. Still better than working. I volunteered with one group and trying with other but so far I am out of town when they meet. I go out of the city once or twice a month for 2-7 days to visit my boyfriend on his farm. It is 100 miles so I shop going both ways and enjoy the drive the get to see the chickens and cat sometimes go fishing or host a BBQ. Better than working but I should get on with the retirement stuff like exercise. I have lost some weight and remodeled some and donated lots of stuff.
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Old 09-01-2015, 12:46 AM   #16
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I retired Jan 15, 2014 and so far not doing well at it.
Sounds to me, from the details you provided, like you are doing just fine in retirement!
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Old 09-01-2015, 05:06 AM   #17
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Congrats on your successful retirement and my sympathies for the loss of your Mom.

I retired Feb of 2013 and have really enjoyed the new found control of my own life. My stress level has dropped to nothing, I've lost 6 lbs, walk 4-6 miles per day, go to the gym 3-4 days per week and I'm section hiking the Appalachian trip twice per year during the optimum weather months of May and Oct. At my age of 60, I'll probably not complete the entire 2100 plus miles, but continue to press forward.

Happy Trails!
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Old 09-01-2015, 11:00 AM   #18
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I retired back in January of 2014. There is no way I could ever work at another job again. I do not and have not missed my job or the people. I felt that way before I retired. Like Sea Kayaker said, "It's been the best year of my adult life".

I have discovered that your goals and perceptions change on a continual basis. You do not have to be locked in to your goals like in the past. As life unfolds, you go with it. You live more in the present and that is good.
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Old 09-01-2015, 11:18 AM   #19
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+1 When w*rking, one is forced to interact with a certain group of people. When retired, one can choose whom to interact with. Along with that comes the responsibility of meeting such people (if the relationships weren't already established), but the quality of the interactions is so much better since you're doing it on your own terms.
But it's sort of like an arranged marriage with your "work buddies"... expectations are low. But if you pick your own buddies and it doesn't work out, that's all on you

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I retired back in January of 2014.
I'm also a January 2014 guy. Quite a few here from that era. We should have a reunion thread, lol!

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What surprises me is that I still don't feel like I have the been able to do everything that I'f thought I'd be able to do!
That's the thing in your post I identify with the most. Frustrated that I can't call one of my buddies and do some adventure travel for a few weeks...they're all still chained to the cube.
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Old 09-01-2015, 03:38 PM   #20
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I'm a little past the one year mark. A lot of things to do or change haven't happened , or are way behind the timeline.

As others have opined , an evolving process. Plans change, and course adjustments more frequent than anticipated.
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