An Unscheduled Life

by Janet

Reading stories over the past few months has been very interesting. They have also pointed out to me just how unique we all are. What may good advice for some may not be for others.

I have been in complete retirement for two years. I had been a registered nurse and, then, owned my own successful bakery, often times working twelve to fourteen hour days.

When I first retired, sold my home, and moved to another state, I thought much about what to do with my time. I have been a widow for twenty-three years and have never been interested in another relationship.

Once getting settled in my new home, I felt as though I had to do something meaningful with the rest of my life. I had planned on doing volunteer work with hospice, but Covid stopped those plans. I have problems with chronic pain and working again on a schedule didn't seem possible. The hours seemed to be quite empty.

Gradually, however, the idea that I really didn't have to schedule my life again began to take hold. I can do just what I want to do. I don't have to volunteer. I don't have to join exercise groups. I don't have to join groups on-line. I don't have to join a senior retirement group.

All of these things may very well be helpful to many people, but when I realized that I am not one of these people, I felt free.

I realize that I do have another advantage in that I live in the basement apartment of my son's condo. He is married but they don't have any children. He works from home full-time now, but I don't talk to him much during the day. My daughter-in-law works part time from home and works on sewing projects in her own office upstairs. I don't see her much during the day either.

We walk the dog together on nice days. We also watch a television show together in the evenings. On weekends, we may do some activities together, but I realize that my son and his wife can make their own plans without me. It is working out well for me. My situation, then, is different from those who are living alone.

However, the hours during the day are mine to fill for myself. I listen to music, exercise to instrumental tango music, read, do some household chores, take naps, play video games, help take care of the dog, and contemplate life. I have also developed an interest in baking sourdough bread, using a starter without yeast. The bread is getting better. A friend and I go out to lunch once a month, and it has been nice to be able to start getting together again.

There are many helpful things written on this site and that is good. However, one must realize that what works for someone else may not work for you.

If finding groups to join, volunteering, and scheduling your life work for you, that is great. If you find what you need in these activities, then you can be thankful for them. But, don't be afraid to admit that those may not be the things you need to do or like to do.

It's okay to decide you want an unscheduled life. Retirement is open for you.

Comments for An Unscheduled Life

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Sounds familiar
by: Jan Boise ID

You sound a lot like me. I have been retired from the health profession for 3 years. In the beginning, I too felt like I needed to be on the go doing something like volunteering. But I realized that was not me and never had been. Now I just see where the day takes me. Sometimes that is just to the recliner for a nap.

Unscheduled Life
by: Nina from London

During this past year I've lived an unscheduled life. In fact, lots of the social activities that I used to enjoy were canceled. There were so many hours to fill.

But I started to paint which makes me happy.... Also, sewing, knitting and crafts. Doing what makes me happy.

There is freedom when you don't feel you have to do just want to do it. However, I did want a routine like getting up early and beginning the day. Guess it has to do with previous years when I was very organized.

I enjoyed your view of retirement and glad you are content.

No need is not the shame as not wanting.
by: Jane/ Hawkins, TX

I am thrilled you are so content with your life. How exciting it must be to not need or want to stretch yourself any further than you are. You have mastered retirement.

Don't be surprised if retirement takes some twists and turns. Remember, it is for a long time. I think the people who enjoy this site do so as much out of wanting to connect with other people than a need to do so.

Being satisfied with your life is a wonderful thing. People who seek more along the way are not being needy. I have met and enjoyed chats with people from all over the world through this site.

Everyone and all environments have different customs and different circumstances. It is fun to learn about them. At least I think it is fun. I like my life too.

Sharing hope and kindness is part of that life. This site allows me to do just that.

Congrats on being able to say you don't need any of it.

Unscheduled Life
by: Sherry/ NC

You have found what makes you happy. It is a good thing.

Sounds Like a Good Plan
by: John A /Tyler Tx


From the sounds of things, it appears you are content with life and your current living conditions. It is nice to see someone here say they are happy with retirement. So many posts I read are filled with such dissatisfaction being expressed.

Keep on keeping on and continue doing what makes you happy. I am happy to hear you have adjusted to retirement quite well!!!

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