I turned in my last employee ID barge exactly one year ago. Looking back at my first year in retirement, I would like to report on the experience:
1. You are correct that Sunday nights are wonderful. In fact, every day is wonderful. Before retiring, only weekends felt relaxing to me. Now everyday feels the same, although I kind of prefer weekdays since there is less crowd wherever I want to go. If I want to be busy, I can get busy doing something on my own schedule. If I want to relax that one day, I can totally relax. Go to bed or wake up whenever I feel like it. No clocks, no commune, no meetings, no weekly reports, no stress.
2. Last year, I was not sure if FIRE life style might or might not be agreeable to me and that I might want to return to the working world after a stay-at-home tryout time period, so I hang on to my PE license registration and some of my working clothes. But they are gone now. I have decided that I like this RE stuff.
3. DW and I exercise more now, either walking or swimming or biking. I lost 10 pounds from last year. My A1C level has been reduced from 6.6 to 6.0; my goal is to get down to 5.7 so I have more to go. We cook and eat better foods. I even learned how to cook a couple of dishes, even though I am still far behind DW cooking skill level. So I told her she should keep doing most of the cooking while I keep the dish washing duty
4. Except for international traveling, my first year budget is on track. No major spending surprises.
5. Of course we could not travel oversea this year, so we took a month long almost 5K miles road trip in October to see multiple national parks and visit families and friends. Staying in hotels were not bad, just a little less crowds than usual. We ate in restaurants a couple of times, but mostly just took foods back to hotels. Rest areas with facilities while on the road were harder to find. We often stopped in towns with supermarkets or Walmart or Target stores and used their facilities while buying some snacks and drinks. The best part? Coming home knowing we could change our return dates if we wanted to and that there would be no emails or works awaiting my return.
6. I have learned a lot financially during the past year and will continue to do so in this new phase. With a little bit of luck, we have more money now than we did at the beginning of the year, even after living on our savings and investments without a paycheck. After the market volatility we experienced this year, my feeling on personal risk tolerance level is becoming a little less fuzzy now which makes AA adjustment easier moving forward.
Considering everything, I think my year one in retirement has been a good start. Here hoping that year two will be better, especially the traveling part.