Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Wednesday Ramble

 After a lifetime of working, raising families, and contributing to the success of this nation in countless other ways, senior citizens deserve to retire with dignity.
Charlie Gonzalez

Yesterday I received an email from a friend I had made on my old Yahoo group.  She wanted to tell me she had finally done it....retired....and asked how I was making out.  I told her I was still working and planned to work until full retirement age so as not to lose any benefits.  I'm also eligible for a pension from my other job, but only after I reach full retirement age, thinking it was 67. "But, isn't your birthday next month?" She asked.  "Yes", I responded, "but I will only be 66.  I still have a year to go."  Well, it turns out that I was wrong.  Because of my year of birth, I will be eligible to retire with 'FULL BENEFITS' next month when I reach my 66th birthday.  I am speechless.  Speechless because I had thought I was going to be forced to work another year to get all my benefits...and speechless because I can't believe I have reached the retirement age.  Where has the time gone?

It seems like only yesterday I walked into my first job...a tiny restaurant in my old neighborhood.  I was barely 16, and I turned out to be a terrible waitress.  I was always forgetting who got what and without fail, I'd end up holding an extra hamburger after the lunch run.   As terrible as I was, the man didn't fire me because I was a neighborhood kid trying to do the right thing.   Years later, when I worked in catering to put myself through school, I did so much better because everybody got the same thing.

So, how am I feeling now?  Well, I think it only natural that I feel kind of sad.  What has been a huge part of my life has almost ended.  I'll be 66, and I have worked since age 16.  That is 50 years of my life I will be saying good-bye to.  But, the other part of me is feeling so exhilarated.  I will finally be free.  My time will be MY time. I will be able get up and go to bed whenever I please because there will be no alarm clock to go off bright and early in the morning.  And if I feel like rocking in my chair all day and reading a book, I can choose to do so without feeling guilty about taking a day off. More importantly, I will no longer have to deal with those dreadful subways on a daily basis suffer from depression because I am overworked at my job and see no way out. It feels good to know that I can walk in there next month and hand in my resignation letter rather than feel trapped as I have been.

Of course, there is no way I am going to do that.  Those were the kind of things I did in my youth.  I thought nothing of quitting a job because I knew there was always going to be something else out there waiting for me.  Well, that's not true anymore.  Who's going to hire a 66 year old woman who walks with a cane?  Besides, I don't have it in me to start over now. So, before I hand in my letter, there is so much planning to do.   must have an income and medical insurance in place. Any tips from retirees will be greatly appreciated. 

All in all I am feeling good right now.  That hopeless feeling is gone, and I feel as if a 500 pound weight has been lifted from my shoulders. It hasn't been easy on me traipsing back and forth to work with my cane, in pain, and not seeing any way out for another year.  Yes, it will be sad to say good-bye, but it is something we all have to face one day, and if I fill my days with things I enjoy, I won't miss it as much.  There IS life after work.

Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under trees on a summer's day, listening to the murmur of the water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time.  

J. Lubbock



  1. Woo hoo! Fabulous news -- a year knocked off working! But you're right -- apply for your pension and get things in order before you quit. I know here in Canada it takes 6 months to process a pension application before the money actually starts to flow. So the government advises people to apply at least 6 months before their birthday/retirement date.

  2. Have you checked this info, with sources closest to it? To make sure, sure, sure that this is so, in your case?

    It is wonderful news, if it is fully so, for you. Please check...


    "Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons,
    for you are crunchy and taste good with ketchup."

  3. Wish I had advice m/f.
    I only have Medicare for health insurance and the lowest Humana coverage for RX's.
    Thankfully I only take two med's and prefer to get them for $10 each for a 3 month supply at Walmart claiming no RX insurance. Humana jacks the RX price way high and still, I'd have a bigger co-pay than $10 for even a months supply. My mother didn't raise a fool. ;0)
    Without my deceased husbands S.S.and small pension, I'd be in tough shape if I didn't have $ in the bank, having only worked outside for less than twenty years. I'm not religious, but I am the first to say that the Lord smiled on me with hubby's W.Comp. messing up for twenty some odd years.
    Congratulations Mary. I can feel your elation at having realized this milestone in your life and the relief it brings. Now it's much easier and it's up to you if you want to continue to work, knowing that it's not something that you HAVE TO DO and if the going gets tough, you can walk away. :0)

  4. I am so very excited for you! You are now able to close one chapter of your life and start a new one. On your terms and your time. I look forward to sharing this journey with you.
    Wishing you a day of clear decisions.


  5. I had every intention of working until full retirement, however the economic picture in our area turned very dark a few years back. I was forced into taking early retirement. It's strange how things have turned out. I seem just as busy as ever, because now I have the time to do all those personal projects that I wanted to do when I was working full time.
    I'm happy for you Mary. I hope you enjoy retirement as much as I have and then some:^)

  6. what a wonderful little surprise.... And you so deserve to release that weight. I hope that the process is one of ease and swiftness, because I can think of no one more fitting to a wonderful later life of relaxation and ME time than you... blessings

  7. I know you will check thoroughly before making any permanent moves Mary. Big congrats are in order though as you move on to another journey in your life...and very many blessings too! :) I can tell you that first day of not having to punch a time clock is the sweetest ever, lol!
    Big Hugs and Love,

  8. I can only imagine how the world looks so differently to you now Mary with this news. What a huge transition and I feel you're really being wise with working everything out before quitting. Your "golden years" are just up ahead and it's waiting for you.

  9. Wow, a year early!?! That is fabulous. It does take a bit for the paper work to be done. ALso you may need a secondary insurance if you are just going to be on Medicare. (I know this from a friend of mine who just retired).
    So good luck with your plans.

  10. Congratulations!! I am so happy for you. You've worked hard all your life and deserve some time to yourself!!
    Isn't this the year of the snake? Shedding our old skins? A fresh new start for you, a new chapter in your life.