Hi, I've read some of the postings and it seems I have a bit of a different entry into early retirement. I'm a 52 year old disabled veteran/RN. I was fighting with trying to stay employed despite chronic pain from injuries suffered in the line of duty and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) as a result of some of my career experiences, such as reponding to terrorist attacks.
My work career started when I was 11--delivering papers. At 18, I was in the Army and worked full time from then on, including going to college. I'm married to a wonderful woman and we raised wonderful kids who all have college degrees and are in helping professions.
I now have enough to pay my bills and not work. Although I don't own my home, it's on a low fixed interest 15 year mortgage. We have so much equity that if we sold our house we could pay off every debt and have a nice nest egg. My health is better now that I'm not working. Part of me wants to shout "Yippeeee, let's play!!!
" and the other part says that I've got to find some sort of work and not be irresponsible
. But I don't want to work! I want to pursue other interests. As part of my searching out my new path, I'm taking art and woodworking courses--something I always wanted to do. I'm planning on volunteering at a national park near my home, too. We're also planning a cross country road trip next summer. My wife may leave her teaching job next year so that we can play more.
As long as the government stays solvent, I should get my pension & be able to live OK. My health care and prescriptions are taken care of, too.
But I'll tell you, it's scary. Can I really do this? Have I really paid my dues enough to deserve this? That's where I'm coming from right now.