529 Working Days
That's right. I've got 529 official working days until I throw in the towel on this work thing. I have been thinking about retirement every single day since my good friends from high school have been ribbing me about it.
I know I should be happy about it but truthfully I worry that I won't have enough structure in retirement. I've been getting up and going to work almost every day of my life since I turned 18, and even before then. I'm afraid I'll be like a fat kid in a candy store. Don't have to get up, can stay in my jammies all day if I want. You know what I mean?
The truth is I really like working most days. It's just that every day as I am walking out to the car, I see weeds that need pulled, I have guilt over not walking my dogs, and lots of stuff that needs to get done.
I've had two full summers off in my 40 years of work life. One summer when my son was 12, I took a leave of absence to spend 3 months with him. We wrote a list of things we wanted to do that summer. It was terrific. We hiked, took picnics, went to the movies, rode our bikes. When I went back to work in September, I ended up leaving that job. I hadn't realized how stressful it had become until I took that hiatus. I ended up at the AG's office in the most boring job I've ever held. I had to learn how to pace down, which is really not my style. Thankfully, I had a hilarious co-worker who kept me in stitches. Mary, if you're reading this, thanks for the memories!
Fast forward to my second summer off which turned into a 22,000 mile road trip to Alaska and then across the United States mid-states to West Virginia and home to Arizona via Florida, Mississippi, and the dreaded Texas. Best road trip EVER! Digital cameras were not quite afforadable then and I was too cheap to snap too many images. I'd like a do over on that.
What will I do in retirement? Well, I have 529 working days to think about that. Hopefully, my employer won't read this. They don't pay me for that.
I've watched 5 women in my office retire in the last two years. I see the angst they suffer as it gets closer. I wonder how I can avoid that?