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Please help me figure out why I feel so overwhelmed!
Old 08-17-2013, 09:57 AM   #1
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Please help me figure out why I feel so overwhelmed!

Sorry this is long but I could really use your help figuring out what's going on with me.

I wrote recently that DH and I have reached FI and we're in the countdown to figuring out when we want to retire (likely within the next year for DH).

We've also decided to move back to Nevada instead of to Florida. Florida was going to be about doing what we want to do every day, Nevada is where my husband's sister lives with her two twin eight-year old sons (she's single).

The reason for NV is that my husband wants to be a part of the boys' lives as they grow up since they have no male in their lives other than family and probably never will. And I'm ok with moving back; I love the little rug rats and there is plenty to do once retired that we enjoy doing. And I honor my husband's wanting to be there to help raise her kids.

In prep for moving back we've started downsizing (going from 3800 sq ft to 1800 sq ft. or less). So today I started purging my office. I've taken pictures of all my sales awards (and thrown them away), started stacks for goodwill and basically am only keeping what I love and use every day... and I'm finding myself on the verge of tears and I don't know why!

I'm not a person who is attached to stuff and I can count on one hand the number of times I've cried in the last 5 years. I regularly throw stuff away and actually enjoy the process, so I'm at a loss for what I'm feeling.

I still love my job (gasp!) and may not retire when DH does. And I've already gotten the green light from management that I can work from wherever I want so the emotions aren't about completely leaving the work world. So if anyone has insight I'd love to hear it!
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Old 08-17-2013, 10:01 AM   #2
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Your past is past, and it sounds to me like you are experiencing grief from that loss. It is sad to end chapters in our lives....we all do it and deal with it differently. It's like reading the last chapter of a book you really love, and not being sure what you will read next.

I try and embrace the grief as much as I can and move through it toward whatever is next. It is often not easy, but there are no U turns in life so forward we all go.

Grief is unique to each of us, but it is an honest emotion with no shame.
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Old 08-17-2013, 10:10 AM   #3
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Because you don't become upset over getting rid of things very often, it could be that you're not used to knowing where these feelings come from, on the very few occasions that you do experience them. Allow yourself to feel them and in time, you'll realize what is behind it all.

Best of luck with the move. I love the reason you are moving to NV and that you are both happy with it.
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Old 08-17-2013, 10:43 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Lisa99 View Post
Sorry this is long but I could really use your help figuring out what's going on with me.

I wrote recently that DH and I have reached FI and we're in the countdown to figuring out when we want to retire (likely within the next year for DH).

We've also decided to move back to Nevada instead of to Florida. Florida was going to be about doing what we want to do every day, Nevada is where my husband's sister lives with her two twin eight-year old sons (she's single).

The reason for NV is that my husband wants to be a part of the boys' lives as they grow up since they have no male in their lives other than family and probably never will. And I'm ok with moving back; I love the little rug rats and there is plenty to do once retired that we enjoy doing. And I honor my husband's wanting to be there to help raise her kids.

In prep for moving back we've started downsizing (going from 3800 sq ft to 1800 sq ft. or less). So today I started purging my office. I've taken pictures of all my sales awards (and thrown them away), started stacks for goodwill and basically am only keeping what I love and use every day... and I'm finding myself on the verge of tears and I don't know why!

I'm not a person who is attached to stuff and I can count on one hand the number of times I've cried in the last 5 years. I regularly throw stuff away and actually enjoy the process, so I'm at a loss for what I'm feeling.

I still love my job (gasp!) and may not retire when DH does. And I've already gotten the green light from management that I can work from wherever I want so the emotions aren't about completely leaving the work world. So if anyone has insight I'd love to hear it!
I think you should keep anything that upsets you to get rid of right now. Those things don't take up much space and you will probably laugh later that you took them with you but better than always regretting that you pitched them. Change is hard for me.

Really nice of you and DH to stand up for family.
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Old 08-17-2013, 10:56 AM   #5
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Have to agree with bestwife, you're making a great choice for family.

She also used the 'change' word, something that strikes fear, terror and many other strong emotions.

Is what your feeling about 'things', or 'change'?

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Old 08-17-2013, 01:21 PM   #6
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Follow your thoughts.
Whenever I have an unusually strong emotional response to something, I consider it a window into my subconscious mind and a real opportunity to gain insight.
The process of retiring and moving on (literally) is full of useful information.
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Old 08-17-2013, 01:42 PM   #7
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Lisa99

Please forgive me if I overreach. I am neither a psychiatrist nor a psychic but I just get this impression that you really do not want to move to NV (or maybe move anyplace for that matter). You identify several things you will lose - a 3800SF house, possessions, implied loss of friends. And it kind of sounds like you would prefer Florida ("doing what we want to do everyday..."). If it were me, I would not be excited about going to be with my spouse's nephews - especially in the role of "substitute parents". In short, you're life is going to be turned upside down for a while. I have no doubt you will adapt, but it is no surprise to me that you are emotional. It would surprise me if you were not.

If you can find a way to make all of these transitions more gradual, you may fare better. Each change is a stressor and you have a bunch of changes on your plate. Maybe it's time to sit down with DH and let him know how you are feeling. Maybe you two can work out a less stressful time-table to complete all the upcoming changes.

DW and I went through loss of parents, her retirement, then mine, then the kids moving away, etc., etc., THEN our move. We "paced" this as much as possible (obviously not the parents). Doing so made us feel much more in control and more sense of peace. STILL we had emotions as we downsized and got ready for our move. Unless you feel you are becoming in some way debilitated, I'd just accept that emotion will be a big part of such major transitions. Best of luck to you and God bless.
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Old 08-17-2013, 02:39 PM   #8
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I second the suggestion to do things more gradually if at all possible, and not get rid of anything just yet that makes you sad to let it go.

I have been making multiple passes through all our stuff - getting rid of the easy stuff first and then putting other things aside to deal with later. This past year I got rid of some things from my grandmother and mementoes from high school.
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Old 08-17-2013, 03:54 PM   #9
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Here's an approach DW used that seems to be working for her.

Get a storage unit and put everything you don't want to part with NOW into it.

Once (maybe twice) a year, go through your stuff and pick out those items you can finally part with. That might mean giving them to a relative, selling them on eBay, or donating them to Goodwill, or tossing them in the trash.

As time goes by, you will gradually whittle your stash down to a small enough pile that you can deal with everything that's left. That might even mean deciding to keep it.

The cost of a storage unit is well worth your peace of mind.
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Old 08-17-2013, 03:56 PM   #10
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I've got no words of wisdom for you. Sorry.

But when I saw the title and the author, I thought you were considering going back to Ameriprise
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Old 08-17-2013, 04:06 PM   #11
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Some good, empathic responses here. I'll just echo that it would be a very emotional time for anyone, so it's not weird that you're crying at all. I'd expect it. You say you have never been attached to things, but things can have symbolic value, and the act of throwing them away means something. It means that part of your life is over; it means all that is behind you now; it means the end of an era (or maybe it means something else to you).

Even if I want to move on, I always get sad when I leave something/someone behind. Human beings are wired to get emotionally attached, and when you break those attachments, there is a very natural feeling of sadness and loss. Even if your heart is committed to the change, it is still sad. It is like closing a chapter of your life.

This has happened to me with every job I've left, every girlfriend I've left, every city I've left. Even if I know it's the right decision, even if I am sick and tired of the situation, I am still sad to leave, sad that it is over.
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Old 08-17-2013, 04:23 PM   #12
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Lisa, I think it's just the change. You said you are OK with the move. Sounds like you had this picture in mind of what your retirement was going to be and then things changed. Your husbands desires maybe put a chink in what you had in mind but really sounds like you would be OK with it. I think it's great what he wants to do with the children in mind and maybe it shocked you. If you are really committed to it being "OK", go for it. I also think you should have a talk with DH and express the feelings you have posted here. You'll both be better with a serious discussion on the subject.
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Old 08-17-2013, 04:57 PM   #13
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Perhaps you should see a professional psychologist or life coach to help you get your thoughts in order. I have used a life coach in the past to help sort out some complicated problems. You are about to make a big move.
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Old 08-17-2013, 06:10 PM   #14
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But when I saw the title and the author, I thought you were considering going back to Ameriprise
Thank you everyone for your insights. I'm thinking about what you all said and advised and I'm sure it will help in the coming weeks.

AND ClifP... I'll be in a pine box before Ameriprise gets our money again! Regardless of how well or poorly we do in retirement with our financials, Ameriprise will never again be in the picture.
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Old 08-17-2013, 06:13 PM   #15
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Lisa, I think it's just the change.
I agree with this. When my wife entered menopause, any little thing would cause an emotional reaction.
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Old 08-18-2013, 09:50 AM   #16
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Kind of going through the same thing. Trying to purge stuff from 2 houses, my mom's and aunt's old houses. No way I can keep some of the things I had planned to keep like old rocking chairs I used when I was a kid visiting my grand parents. Just don't have room for them. But keeping a blend of things between the two houses. And those things should be enough to keep the old memories alive.

Nothing else to add as you have already received lot's of good advice. Just letting you know we all go through this to a certain extent when trying to move on from either a loss or just moving to a new chapter in your life.
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Old 08-18-2013, 10:08 AM   #17
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I agree with this. When my wife entered menopause, any little thing would cause an emotional reaction.
LOL! I can say with 100% certainty that the particular change referenced is not the cause for my tears.
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Old 08-18-2013, 10:31 AM   #18
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Kind of going through the same thing. Trying to purge stuff from 2 houses, my mom's and aunt's old houses. No way I can keep some of the things I had planned to keep like old rocking chairs I used when I was a kid visiting my grand parents. Just don't have room for them. But keeping a blend of things between the two houses. And those things should be enough to keep the old memories alive.

Nothing else to add as you have already received lot's of good advice. Just letting you know we all go through this to a certain extent when trying to move on from either a loss or just moving to a new chapter in your life.
Dawg, thank you for sharing. Losing your mom and aunt puts my task in perspective. I hope you're doing ok.
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Old 08-18-2013, 10:52 AM   #19
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Lisa, I think that what Koolau and EREddie wrote summed up my feelings regarding this. Change is hard. Also, when you have this picture of how something will be (retirement) and then it changes completely, it is hard.

I think it is great what your DH and you are doing for the boys and their mom. I hope that you find great joy in it. However, it has to be scary, since it is so huge in scope. I would talk it over with DH and agree to try this, but let him know that it might not be permanent, and that you should review your future plans once a year.
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Old 08-18-2013, 11:01 AM   #20
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I agree with this. When my wife entered menopause, any little thing would cause an emotional reaction.
Not sure I would chalk it up to that, as many men can experience similar emotions associated with major life events (e.g. cross-country moves, career/job changes, etc.).
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