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Old 12-26-2016, 11:44 AM   #41
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I remember the last drive home...it was heaven. I would say it took about a month to get comfortable with not having any real responsibility outside of the home, though. 6 months after, w*rk was a distant memory.
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Old 12-26-2016, 12:06 PM   #42
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Then at a recent party (now 5 months since ER) with some work friends, the kind you've known across decades, and some of them started the inevitable "so and so's got me working on xyz now" and I had the knee-jerk of "ugh him? that? No!" and then 10 seconds later, back to ... yah i don't care lol, but I hope that works out for you.
A year after I retired, I was invited to a promotion party for a previous co-w*rker who I had known for years. It was a terrible, TERRIBLE idea. The only topic that was discussed was w*rk related. I shouldn't have been surprised, but I was very much out of the loop and more importantly, I could have cared less. So, I vowed to never attend another party that is hosted by a previous co-w*rker.
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Old 12-26-2016, 12:11 PM   #43
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I was based out of LA but lived in Denver for the last 12 years of my career. After a few celebratory parties in LA (one paid for by me, one paid for by the company) my DS, GF and I boarded a plane and flew home one last time. I had made that flight way too many times the last 12 years. When that plan hit the ground it hit me. I was done and it has been nothing but good since then!
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Old 12-31-2016, 12:34 PM   #44
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How long did it take to realize that you were retired? It has been a week and I still feel like I have to go to work.
About four hours. I sneaked away from work after lunch on my last day before terminal leave. If anyone had noticed, I doubt they would have cared.

As for that "have to go to work" feeling, I strongly recommend that you lay down with a pillow under your head... until the symptoms pass. Repeat whenever necessary.
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Old 01-01-2017, 11:13 AM   #45
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About four hours. I sneaked away from work after lunch on my last day before terminal leave. If anyone had noticed, I doubt they would have cared.

As for that "have to go to work" feeling, I strongly recommend that you lay down with a pillow under your head... until the symptoms pass. Repeat whenever necessary.
I had a ret ceremony from the AF which was great closure. When it came to the airlines I did what you did and slipped away.

Two weeks into FIRE the feeling is going away. New Years I lit off fireworks. I hadn't done that since I was a kid. We are going to our happy place the end of Jan, Maui!
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Old 01-01-2017, 11:43 AM   #46
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I had a ret ceremony from the AF which was great closure. When it came to the airlines I did what you did and slipped away.

Two weeks into FIRE the feeling is going away. New Years I lit off fireworks. I hadn't done that since I was a kid. We are going to our happy place the end of Jan, Maui!
Hope you get to play a few rounds while there.
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Old 01-01-2017, 11:50 AM   #47
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Highly person dependent. Some people love what they do, their jobs, and upon retirement like to stay connected somehow (perhaps by staying in touch with past co-workers). Nothing wrong with that. Personally, I stayed in touch, but my career immediately became something I "used to do."
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Old 01-07-2017, 01:42 PM   #48
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I had a ret ceremony from the AF which was great closure. When it came to the airlines I did what you did and slipped away.
I'd watched way too many steely-eyed killers of the deep sobbing their eyes out on the podium during their ceremony, and I wasn't going to be one of them.

I also saw way too many man-hours wasted on getting ready for ceremonies, parading the ego-fest, and cleaning up afterward. During the 1990s drawdown it got so bad that some commands were doing retirement ceremonies 2-3 times per week, and larger commands were reverting to weekly group "retirement recognition ceremonies".

My shipmates and I chose a lunch BBQ followed by early liberty.
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Old 01-07-2017, 11:47 PM   #49
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I'd watched way too many steely-eyed killers of the deep sobbing their eyes out on the podium during their ceremony, and I wasn't going to be one of them.

I also saw way too many man-hours wasted on getting ready for ceremonies, parading the ego-fest, and cleaning up afterward. During the 1990s drawdown it got so bad that some commands were doing retirement ceremonies 2-3 times per week, and larger commands were reverting to weekly group "retirement recognition ceremonies".

My shipmates and I chose a lunch BBQ followed by early liberty.
WOW! 2 to 3 a week. No sobbing eyes here and i'm no steely-eyed killer either. LOL. I debated whether to have one or not. I'm glad I did. My ceremony was simple and short. My parents loved it. All volunteers and no rent a crowd.

For my retirement party I rented a suite at Busch Stadium. We all had a great time and the Cards won.

As for my retirement from the airlines. No fini flight, no water canons from the fire trucks. I just wanted turn in my equipment and retire. I'm feeling the freedom now and I like it.
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Old 01-08-2017, 12:54 AM   #50
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Didn't take very long to "realize" I was retired. Not a very difficult intellectual task. The real problem was emotional. Maybe that's what you meant? In my case the emotional fallout took quite a while. For better or worse my identity was tied very closely to my career, Still very happy to be retired, but took about 3 years, I think, to "create" a new identity for myself, ie who did I think "I" was. During this period I was a bit of a jerk on occasion, I am told. 10 years in and I'm much more comfortable in my own skin.
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Old 01-08-2017, 08:46 AM   #51
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WOW! 2 to 3 a week. No sobbing eyes here and i'm no steely-eyed killer either. LOL. I debated whether to have one or not. I'm glad I did. My ceremony was simple and short. My parents loved it. All volunteers and no rent a crowd.

For my retirement party I rented a suite at Busch Stadium. We all had a great time and the Cards won.

As for my retirement from the airlines. No fini flight, no water canons from the fire trucks. I just wanted turn in my equipment and retire. I'm feeling the freedom now and I like it.
WT, as a firefighter with my last few years at the arff station, it would have been an honor to douse your last flight with a water cannon salute, as we did with many retiring pilots, retiring firefighters, honor flight veterans, make a wish children, and sadly our deceased soldiers.

However, I understand wanting to keep a low profile in the last days, as I did the same thing and simply left with a few heartfelt goodbyes. I too have seen too many ego fests which should have been dignified retirement coffees. Sad thing was, during the speeches, that the egos were from some of the upper echelon touting their own accomplishments more so than the accomplishments of those leaving. Hence, I did not want to give them the satisfaction, or the opportunity for them to get an afternoon away from the office.

Regarding how long it took to realize I was retired? Not too long, however, sometimes, even after being gone for 18 months, I still occasionally feel that I'm supposed to be somewhere or I will be in trouble for being awol, but that is fleeting and becoming a lot less frequent, as well as the firefighting dreams. Thankfully, the firefighting dreams usually turn out well.
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Old 01-08-2017, 11:00 AM   #52
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WT, as a firefighter with my last few years at the arff station, it would have been an honor to douse your last flight with a water cannon salute, as we did with many retiring pilots, retiring firefighters, honor flight veterans, make a wish children, and sadly our deceased soldiers.

However, I understand wanting to keep a low profile in the last days, as I did the same thing and simply left with a few heartfelt goodbyes. I too have seen too many ego fests which should have been dignified retirement coffees. Sad thing was, during the speeches, that the egos were from some of the upper echelon touting their own accomplishments more so than the accomplishments of those leaving. Hence, I did not want to give them the satisfaction, or the opportunity for them to get an afternoon away from the office.

Regarding how long it took to realize I was retired? Not too long, however, sometimes, even after being gone for 18 months, I still occasionally feel that I'm supposed to be somewhere or I will be in trouble for being awol, but that is fleeting and becoming a lot less frequent, as well as the firefighting dreams. Thankfully, the firefighting dreams usually turn out well.
I appreciate the water salute. I also appreciate FFs. I was a Vol FF for 7yrs and really appreciate the full time FFs. You don't know how many times I called for ARFF(airport rescue) in the simulator LOL.

Ego fest were usually reserved for General Officers but not all. Col and below retirement ceremonies I usually enjoyed.

I do feel like I need to be somewhere now but baseball spring training is still about a month and a half away.
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Old 01-08-2017, 12:31 PM   #53
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OK, old thread, but I'm not the one who dug it up. Here's my moment:

On my last day of work I was essentially done by lunchtime. Just had to go turn in my badge and say a few more good-byes but by early afternoon, I had no place to go back to. So I headed home.

I figured I'd stop by the home improvement store on my way home to pick up a few things. Remember now, it was early- to mid-afternoon. A time I'd normally be at work.

As I was walking in toward the store, I noticed all the other guys walking in were older (and quite a few were walking more slowly) than I. None of the contractors you see in the morning. None of the young DIY'ers you see on the weekends.

At that point, it hit me. I'm one of THEM.
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Old 01-08-2017, 01:27 PM   #54
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How long did it take to realize that you were retired? It has been a week and I still feel like I have to go to work.
after two weeks.
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Old 01-08-2017, 05:11 PM   #55
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For me, and for DW, it was a bit more complicated. I had been posted overseas by my megacorp for 14 years and was the country and regional (Asia Pac) CEO. I knew exactly when my time was coming because I had negotiated an exit 4 years prior...when it was going to happen, how it was going to happen, and the parachute. At the end, the guy we had hired to replace me wasn't working out, global CEO was aware of it and asked if I'd be willing to stay another year if necessary. But, there was no further discussion about if it was necessary until mid September, just prior to our agreed Dec 2012 timeframe. So, I brought up the subject again with Global boss, who in the meantime had decided to bring in an industry expert from Europe. with no Asia experience. I did indicate my displeasure with the choice, as Asian countries have odd rules regulating our industry, and I was uncomfortable leaving a business that I'd grown from a hundred million or so (before an acquisition) to $600 million post acquisition, then to $2 billion organically, to someone who did not know the ins and outs nor the language. Anyway, the decision was made, I was on my way out, but had to wait until 10 minutes before announcing it to the markets to announce my retirement to my staff. Then, I had 6 weeks to arrange the move back home, meetings with local regulators, meetings with the heads of each of my country operations, parties here there and everywhere, with a final executive committee and board of directors send off in Boston (before flying back to Asia to do the move mid December).

My last day was 12/21/12, and terminal leave until the end of the year, and paid non-compete period for the following year. Seriously, the hardest part was emotionally detaching from my closest staff members and worrying about their futures. Of my 10 most senior staff plus my exec assistant, none are still there. Most have found other jobs, my CFO has not. My EA has struggled, as she's now over 50 (women rarely get hired at that age there). My most senior female staff member was laid off as soon as I left, but I called in some favors from others in the industry I knew.

So why did this happen? Well, Newguy from Europe wanted to remake the senior team, out of all Europeans. Costs skyroketed. Profits dropped. Sales declined for a while and have been flat after that (remember, public company, results are published).

Again, the emotional piece of watching staff that I had developed be kicked out because they didn't speak English well enough, seeing sales decline because of turmoil at the mid-senior levels, seeing a business that I led and grew decline precipitously, seeing record profitability drop to mediocre levels...all of this hurt, pretty bad. It's like watching your child die of cancer. Eventually I couldn't watch anymore. I sold my remaining performance shares, and I don't bother looking at the results anymore. I do still have contact with my inner circle, and I write letters of recommendation for them from time to time. One of them has a business trip to San Francisco coming up, so I'm hoping to get over there to meet up with him for dinner.

So back to the question...I guess I've mostly thrown off the mantle of work, although I still have thoughts and nightmares of those last 14 years of work almost daily, but they are fleeting, rather than consuming my entire days.
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Old 01-08-2017, 11:39 PM   #56
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Seriously, the hardest part was emotionally detaching from my closest staff members and worrying about their futures. .

I identify with this strongly. (Also a long time expat with lots of time in Asia by the way). All my top team got purged within months of my leaving and I felt extremely responsible and even guilty about it for a long while. Everyone has now landed one way or the other - few making as much money and few in the same field. some FIREd.and some just REd! ...but that's not necessarily a bad thing either. I helped a lot of them with their next steps which certainly helped my own sense of responsibility for their predicaments a lot. Part of leaving a "big job" is simply accepting that you can't control most of the things you used to take for granted that you could control. It is a hard but good lesson.
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Old 01-09-2017, 12:39 AM   #57
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It's hard to watch all your leadership achievements falling apart or being deliberately dismantled. The leadership gurus say that the highest form of leadership is to mentor people who can take your place and improve on what you have done. That assumes you can choose your successor, which is not usually the case. It's very frustrating to provide many months' notice, only to find that the organization is slow to recruit your successor. One more reason to make a clean break.
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Old 01-09-2017, 02:52 AM   #58
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Thanks for sharing that, Rambler. Makes my transition out seem like a piece of cake. It's been 10 years for me and both my successors were from my team when I left. The organization has gone from one success to another over this period. Still have most of my shares.
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Old 01-09-2017, 03:58 PM   #59
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I had that experienc three times.
1. Profit centre disbanded at megacorp
2. Company taken over at a discount
3. Company sold at substantial discount

All the people said they loved it when they worked for me.

Yea but my goals were no longer compatible.

Time to move on. Not your problem anymore. Take pride in what you achieved!
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Old 01-09-2017, 05:04 PM   #60
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For me it was about six months to fully embrace and realize I was really retired. For my wife, it's a bit longer. We've been retired 1.5 years and she still occasionally yet unconsciously gets a little uptight Sunday night, dreading Mondays out of sheer habit. Then she realizes it and laughs.
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