Three years ago today was my first day of retirement. Having no job and, most importantly, no need to find one, wasn’t necessarily liberating. I wish I’d taken the time to write my thoughts back on that day. Had I done so I’d remember how it felt to wake up on a Tuesday morning on my own time.
I probably didn’t sleep very late since my body clock was rigidly set to be asleep by 11:00 pm and awake by 6:30. Since it was January, when I got out of bed I would have put on at least three layers. I would have headed downstairs, turned up the heat, and put on the coffee before planting my butt at the computer — a Dell 15-inch laptop. I wouldn’t have known at the time it was my last week as a Microsoft Windows user, although I had started to think seriously about getting a Mac.
Had I written my thoughts and feelings I’m certain I’d have recorded that I felt badly Jennifer continued to be employed, that we couldn’t just begin retirement together. I continue to feel that way — we’ve frequently discussed moving to a more desirable place to live out our years. I feel guilty about being free to spend my time as I choose, every day is Saturday. When Jen headed to her office I felt lost because I was alone and it was January, and cold, and I had no where to go, and I didn’t know what to do with myself. I got over that.
I acquired my first Apple computer, a mid–2011 MacBook Air (11-inch), on Friday of that first week of retirement. I began visiting websites and listening to podcasts that specialize in Mac technicalities, which have provided access to knowledge that has allowed me to move beyond rank n00b status. It’s a good hobby for me.
I’ve had the time and resources to acquire a good camera and I’ve learned to use it. The local university has an offering of classes for those over 50 that includes several photography classes. I’ve taken most of them, and if nothing else, learned to recognize a good photo. I’ve played more golf than I ever imagined I’d have time for — my game has gotten better although it took a hit due to injury this past year.
As I look back at the last three years I realize I haven’t changed anyone’s life but my own. I have not made the world a better place. Since every day is Saturday, I frequently don’t know what day of the week it is. My body clock has shifted — these days I’m rarely in bed before 1:00 am; I only get up before 9:00 for special occasions. There are things I promised myself I’d do that I haven’t, which only makes me mad at myself for not taking the time, or learning the skills, to accomplish them. Maybe in year four?