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And now we are two... (an anniversary post)
Old 07-31-2014, 07:37 AM   #1
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And now we are two... (an anniversary post)

As July 31 ends and August creeps up on the clock, I realize that it is now my second anniversary of leaving the world of full-time corporate life. I'm now 54 and I have to say these 730 days have been full of adventure, fun, time... I feel blessed, truly.



The most startling and actually difficult moments have been (re)watching movies or tv series DW swears blind we'd watched together before or (re)reading books she swears I read before and having them feel like complete virgin territory -- that simply drives home how "absent", jetlagged and all-consumed with my big corporate job I was during the past years - particularly the last seven when I was in my most senior and stressed positions. I feel humbled and guilty for all I missed out on or didn't partake of -- yet also grateful that the rewards of those years make our current life possible and that we are both healthy and young enough to enjoy it. And that she didn't give up on a man who probably was a better corporate warrior than husband!



(of course it is also possible DW is just messing with my mind .. she is a bit like that!)



Financially I feel pretty confident. Net of rental income coming in we're spending 2.69% of liquid assets annually which feels very reasonable -- and more importantly, we are satisfied and not lusting after anything more than we have (ok, we miss flying business class, but in the realm of problems that's about as minor and petty as it gets!)



I am very grateful for this forum and community -- I miss the fellowship of work most of all, so having a virtual community of people with similar circumstances is the next best thing.



There are, certainly, moments when I feel that I'm not doing as much as I "should" - but there are always part-time projects, volunteer work, mentoring, conferences etc that give me a taste of non-retirement... and send me back happily.



Thanks to all who make this community work, courage to those standing on the brink and cheers to those who are further down the path than I.
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Old 07-31-2014, 10:15 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dd852 View Post
The most startling and actually difficult moments have been (re)watching movies or tv series DW swears blind we'd watched together before or (re)reading books she swears I read before and having them feel like complete virgin territory -- that simply drives home how "absent", jetlagged and all-consumed with my big corporate job I was during the past years - particularly the last seven when I was in my most senior and stressed positions.


(of course it is also possible DW is just messing with my mind .. she is a bit like that!)
Thanks for posting. I love the anniversary posts b/c it gives me a glimpse into what my RE is going to be like.

Above happens to be me a lot. I usually blame it on my brain capacity, some memory are removed for new ones to be stored . But it makes watching the same movie again a fun event like watching it for the first time. I read Cat's Cradle a month ago after reading it in high school decades ago. It was like reading a book I never read before.
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Old 07-31-2014, 11:47 AM   #3
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Great Job!

I just passed my two year aniversary of year left to go. My retirement countdown timer says 705 days left. I may re-evaluate at the end of the year, and go shorter, never longer.

Congrats, I am looking forward to it too.
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Old 07-31-2014, 05:18 PM   #4
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Congratulations! I also have feelings of regret for how my family suffered; like you, the last several years were the worst. I was more ambitious than I acknowledged even to myself, and was always looking for the "attagirl" from w*rk more than from my family. Also like you, I'm much more conscious of being "present" at what I do now. But it's a process.
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Old 08-01-2014, 01:14 PM   #5
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Congrats. This July is one year for me. Virtually everything in your post resonated with me. Especially the corporate warrior bit. And missing business class. And feeling like I should be doing more. I think missing out on certain activities as a husband/father, while over-achieving as a corporate warrior, is part of the trade-off we make to enable early retirement. Looking back, I missed out on a lot.

I had a relatively short megacorp career (25 years), but I traveled extensively and worked 11-12 hour days, not including a two-hour commute every day. I was paid well, but the stress of the last 5-10 years was overwhelming and unhealthy. It's like I crammed a 40-year career into 25 years (time and money). While I feel blessed to be retired at my age, I also wonder if quality of life would have been better with a more balanced approach.

I have about 4 or 5 very close friends from work that I truly miss interacting with on a daily basis. I try to have lunch with one of them every week, but we are inevitably drifting in separate directions.

So... I'm adapting and finding new ways to interact with people, new challenges to occupy my mind, strengthening family relationships, and trying to get back in shape physically. But flying coach... that's just hard.
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