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10 years later
Old 07-09-2005, 05:41 AM   #1
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10 years later

This is a comparison of what I expected about 10 years ago
vs. where we are today:


I would be married


I am, different woman


I would carry high dediuctible catastrophic health insurance
until Medicare kicked in


Most carriers don't want me


I would be a renter indefinitely


Own two (2) homes


I would work PT indefinitely


Drew my last paycheck in June, 1998


I would be living in Illinois


Still here, but not by choice.


I would spend a lot of leisure time hunting and riding motorcycles


I do neither any more


I would be closer to my children


All grown and gone. Relationships good overall, but I don't see
enough of them.


Would need to watch every penny and budget religiously


Although we are frugal, we don't budget formally.


That NW might need to be drawn down to bridge the gap to SS and that
my IRA would need to be tapped early.


NW went up and then leveled off. IRA untouched.


That my parents would have passed on and/or we would find a way
to take care of them without messing up our ER plans.


They are here and require more attention daily.

Would be interested to hear from others who have been ERed a while.


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Re: 10 years later
Old 07-10-2005, 12:53 PM   #2
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Posts: 1,352
Re: 10 years later

As you know, only ER'd 2 months and 9 days ago. But my expectations were so wrong I laugh. I'll just share the one since I know JG is looking for longer term ones.

My favorite expectation: I would move to Chicago hi-rise, furnish it like a museum with all kinds of neat things.

Reality: Rental furniture and trying to negotiate out of the lease. Dumping belongings so fast it's hilarious.

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It's only been three years-- yet like it was yesterday!
Old 07-10-2005, 06:28 PM   #3
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It's only been three years-- yet like it was yesterday!

Good format, John, I'll expand on it.

E: That I'd retire from the Navy and get a "real" job.
R: ER is more fun than I'd ever imagined. There's no going back.

E: That I'd get a job offer I couldn't refuse.
R: I did get several, but I refused them.

E: That I'd miss the Navy camaraderie (shared misery) & shipmates.
R: No way. Spouse brings home enough work gossip to occasionally push my "enough already" button. I read Navy Times and the USNI Proceedings but I just don't care. Workplace acquaintances have moved on without being missed-- ER really helps you figure out who your friends are, and they supply all the camaraderie necessary.

E: That our neighbors would besiege us with "Hey, you're retired with time on your hands, could you help us --?
R: We're all good friends and no one appears to be taking advantage of my indolence.

E: That after a traditional "three-year tour of duty" I'd be bored/restless and ready to relocate.
R: Nope. We're looking forward to setting new longevity records in this home.

E: That I'd have more free time.
R: Yes and no. I have plenty more free time, but without the constraints of work & commuting I tend to overschedule. The difference is that now it's my own fault.

E: That I'd grow my hair for a year or two and then "get over" all those uniform regulations.
R: Pony tails take a long time, and it wasn't even really down to my collar for nearly 18 months. This appears to be a teenage rebellion that may need a decade.

E: That I'd grow a beard to make up for all those uniform regulations.
R: About six weeks. Never again.

E: That I'd be a world-class surfer by now.
R: Not even close.

E: That I'd be bored with surfing by now.
R: Not even close.

E: That in six months we'd finish all the home improvements, repairs, yard work, & housecleaning and be sitting around wishing for something to do.
R: Not even close.

E: That we'd have less money.
R: Not even close. On some "bad" market days we'd be down $10-$20K and earlier this year we'd dropped more than what I used to think of as a year's pay, but we've made up all of that. Today our retirement portfolio is closing in on its all-time high.

E: That I'd find plenty of ER compatriots.
R: That's correct (thanks to this board!), but I expected to find more of them on the same island as me-- let alone in the same time zone.

E: That I'd be fighting a bulging waistline and a drinking problem.
R: Tae kwon do. Today I weigh less than my senior year in high school (with much more muscle) and I appear to have the drinking (boredom) under control.

E: That I'd need my civilian attire left over from graduate school.
R: Every year I get rid of a few more coats, ties, & slacks.

E: That I'd start a handyman business.
R: First, there's plenty of handyman business on our own property. Second, it's not that challenging to profit from the neighbors' lack of knowledge/skills/time. It's more fun to teach them. Third, while I enjoy fixing things, if I'm getting paid to do it at a certain time then it seems too much like work.

E: That I'd grow up.
R: I tend to measure my maturity (or lack of it) by how often I annoy my kid. Maturity-- overrated. Annoying your kid-- priceless.

E: That spouse & I would be doing more SCUBA diving (this could be a euphemism for numerous activities).
R: Apparently some popular ER activities are gonna wait until we're empty-nesters.

E: That I'd know what I want to do with the rest of my life.
R: I'm doing it!

Co-author (with my daughter) of “Raising Your Money-Savvy Family For Next Generation Financial Independence.”
Author of the book written on "The Military Guide to Financial Independence and Retirement."

I don't spend much time here— please send a PM.
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Re: 10 years later
Old 07-11-2005, 12:20 AM   #4
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Posts: 4,459
Re: 10 years later

We're three years into it. The original expectations were to travel extensively and then perhaps start a new business. I kicked around biz plans for the first six months or so, we traveled for several weeks, then we had a kid (month 9), and now we just entertain the kid (and vice versa). Wouldn't have it any other way.
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Re: 10 years later
Old 07-11-2005, 02:15 AM   #5
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Re: 10 years later

Not even half a year into it - still just gearing down while adding things I never had time for; proper work outs, reading, catching up with old friends Etc.

I will update further when reach the 1 year mark.

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Re: 10 years later
Old 07-11-2005, 06:19 AM   #6
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Posts: 7,939
Re: 10 years later


Since I'm an 'accidental ER' - I hesitate to attempt a reconstruction of my thought patterns.

Planned ER in 2006 at age 63 - with 35 year co. pension and 1.3 mil 401k - give or take.

1993 layed off at 49 - took one year temp job (1995), early 1998 pension (much smaller) - discovered this forum circa 2003.

My attitudes - thought processes were all over the map - looking back - enjoyed it though.

Now I are a 'high class ER' - it's nice to have a label.

Heh, heh, heh, heh.
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Re: 10 years later
Old 07-11-2005, 07:01 AM   #7
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Location: DFW
Posts: 1,999
Re: 10 years later

Coming up on year 2. I didn't expect to like it so much, but retirement is NICE. It's getting harder and harder to remember Mega Corp and it's mega meetings. I run into other Mega retirees, and to a person, happy to be out. And I'm emailing and talking less and less to current employees. Everybody moves on.

Financially, investments have made me better off than when I quit. No reason to turn back now. Oh, one thing that I did not expect, was although gross income was reduced significantly, when you stop paying social security, stop paying income taxes, and stop paying Mega-Corp medical insurance, and stop the 10% input into the 401k, the net income now is near what it was when working.
Resist much. Obey Little. . . . Ed Abbey

Disclaimer: My Posts are for my amusement only.
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Re: 10 years later
Old 07-11-2005, 10:13 AM   #8
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Posts: 188
Re: 10 years later

Thanks gentlemen for some interesting, "I hope I express these same sentiments in two years," commentary.
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Re: 10 years later
Old 07-11-2005, 10:34 AM   #9
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Re: 10 years later

E: Work until age 50 or 55
R: Why waste the best years of my life working?* I may not make it, I may not be healthy, I may lose all my interests in life.* Semi-retire in my mid 30s and do the things I may not be able to do when I get older.* Have some fun now while the portfolio (hopefully) grows on its own and add to it if possible until it can give me a 3% to 4% SWR at which point fully retire and enjoy every second of life.
No man is free who is not master of himself. --- Epictetus
Enjoy Yourself (It's Later Than You Think). --- Guy Lombardo
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Re: 10 years later
Old 08-27-2005, 08:59 PM   #10
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Re: 10 years later

E: retire in 10 years
R: still counting the days, may be 10 more yrs at 50
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