Retiring is Hard Work & More Random Thoughts

Four weeks from today, I’ll be retired. For several months, I’ve teased my co-workers that I’m going to sit on my front porch that first morning, take a photo of the sunrise, and text them with the message, “This is what I’m doing today.

With my luck, it will probably be pouring down rain, but that’s okay because we desperately need it. We’re in a severe drought right now, somewhat reminiscent of the summer of 2011.

Not quite as bad, but still cause for concern.

Anyway, back to retirement. I began planning this around mid-December. One of my co-workers, who had planned for years, is retiring the same day. When I returned from a week’s vacation in early January, we had something like thirty-three weeks until the big day, and now it’s down to four.

I’ve come to one conclusion. Retiring, or planning for retirement, is hard work. I’ve already turned over most of my job duties to others, so the work days seem long. One thing I can say about my job is that it never got boring. There was always plenty to do and new challenges every day. (When I interviewed, I said I wanted a challenging job. I got my wish.)

Still, there are days when I come home mentally exhausted. Maybe it’s because I’m trying to finish the last of my collection of short stories. Yes, I’m behind, and yes, I still plan to publish them this year. It’s looking like an October release date. I have a title and a cover, but more on that later.

I continue plugging along on my stories and plodding along on my remaining work days. I’m looking forward to not having to wake up to an alarm clock, although I’ll need to train my four-legged alarm clock not to wake me at 5:00.

I want to get back on a more regular blog schedule (something besides book reviews). I already have some plans in the works, but I’m not rushing anything. At first, I want to enjoy scenes like this:

Both views are from my front porch. Obviously not taken this year because everything was green.

One of the short stories in my collection had the working title The House on Baker Street. The name, but not the story, was inspired by this song written and recorded by the late Gerry Rafferty. I’ll leave you with a video.

52 thoughts on “Retiring is Hard Work & More Random Thoughts

  1. Retirement is a lot of work,Joan, not only preparing for it, but on the other side as well. I’m busy all the time and hardly can catch my breath. Part of that is writing, of course, which I’m glad to hear you’ll continue. I look forward to your October release. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Four weeks will go by fast, Joan. Show the photo of the sunrise from your porch to celebrate your day. I planned my retirement five years in advance. I’ve been so busy in my retired life but it’s fun busyness.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It will go fast, Miriam. I had a “moment” today when my supervisor turned in the final paperwork. I’ve planned this for months, and I’m looking forward to it, but I’ll miss my coworkers.

      Rain or shine, I plan to take a photo that first morning.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Going into my 11th year of retirement, I wish you well. The one thing I learned was to have plans and stick to them. So many folks who retire don’t do that and they are lost without their former lives. I wouldn’t go back for anything.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I like that part of the state. We used to travel that way when my brother lived in Midland. Still have memories of climbing Ranger Hill.

      You all had some bad fires earlier this year. The drought is scary.

      BTW, if you’ve never stopped at the Smokestack in Thurber, you should give it a try.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Congratulations! Retirement is wonderful! I’m not a morning person, but my cat wakes me up every day between 5:00 and 6:00…..and then, I feed him and go back to bed:) The views from your porch are gorgeous.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I remember those leading up to my final exit from the workplace and I am so excited for you. There is a whole new world waiting! You are right about the drought. It’s critical right now and yet we have one triple-digit day after the other. Sometimes it gets wearisome just to walk outside in the furnace. I’m looking forward to your short story collection. I know it will be worth the wait. Love the song you left us with!! Have a great day, Joan!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I remember when you said you were retiring. So happy for you. We (hubby and I) are not old enough to retire yet. Looking forward to those days. I know I love sitting on my porch and relaxing, especially when it rains.

    Congratulations and enjoy your retirement.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Congratulations on your upcoming retirement, and you are right. Everything in your life changes when that happens. Some things for the good, and some that are a real pain in the patoot! Mark was due to retire in December, too, but thanks to the stinking new owners of the management firm, he was pretty much pushed out in June. We have been scrambling like mad with everything, including insurance issues, that we thought we’d had a good handle on.

    Here’s hoping your retirement goes MUCH more smoothly, and that you have loads of time to enjoy watching that sunrise every morning. BEAUTIFUL view from you porch, btw. I’ll do a rain dance for you if today turns out better than yesterday. If not, I’ll do a rain “shuffle,” instead. Whatever works! 🤗❤️🤗

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m shuffling all over the place today. Hope it starts clouding up SOON! 😂 And good luck getting back to your writing. I’m looking forward to your stories, and to getting back to writing, myself, before much longer. Happy Upcoming Retirement! 😊

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Congratulations on your upcoming retirement, Joan! I retired last year to write full-time, and I’m so glad I did. (Although I do have Pete’s question about how in the world I found time to work.)

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I remember the retirement countdown so well. These last weeks will pass quickly, Joan, and the final day might take you past your normal hours — just to finish up one more thing. It did for me. Hang in there! 🤗

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That makes a huge difference, Jill. Fortunately for me, The University of Texas will pay my insurance for life. I would be thinking differently if that wasn’t the case.


  10. One of the things my retired brothers and I joke about is how did we ever find the time to work? I pictured a short-term honeymoon phase after I retired, but I’m still riding the wave. It’s wonderful to wake up happy each day without a million things to worry about. The only ones I know unhappy in retirement are those without hobbies/interests. I also love having the time to volunteer for the causes important to me. I loved my job, but this phase is pretty sweet, Joan.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m looking forward to it. My husband retired last year and he’s loving it. He’s done some volunteer work and keeps busy. He’s an extrovert, so I thought he’d have a tough time adjusting, but his hobbies and interests keep him busy.

      I’ll miss my coworkers, but as I told our IT director yesterday, I’m looking forward to this new phase in life. Years ago my brother (who is 12 years older) told me that I would know when the time was right. He was correct. A year ago, I hadn’t planned this, but in December, I knew I was ready.

      Liked by 1 person

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