Could have planned better
(South Bend, IN)
Just before my 65th birthday, I decided it was time to retire. My husband had been happily retired for 8 years and I thought I was ready to join him.
My game plan for the first year was to move around just enough that no one would mistake me for dead! I planned to sleep late, stay up late, do what I wanted to do when I wanted to do it. Life was going to be great.
After all, I had anticipated this day for 47 years.
While we do enjoy road trips on occasion, most of our time is spent at home or with friends and family. Our hobbies are reading, watching TV, internet and some yard work, depending on the Indiana weather.
The first 4 months of my retirement were exactly what I had hoped for. The stress was gone, I would never again be under a boss's thumb, and I had never been more relaxed.
Then something happened. One of my classmates passed away, another co-worker was in the process of dying, a cousin died and another friend was diagnosed with a very serious illness. Suddenly, I questioned my own mortality more than ever before. I wondered what I would do with the rest of my life, beyond finding new ways to entertain myself.
I became clinically depressed, no longer interested in the trips to the beach, shopping, dinners out. Nothing seemed to matter. I became anxious, waking after a few hours of sleep with trembling and mind racing. And retirement started to suck!
At about the same time, I developed an illness that will require surgery in the next couple of weeks. Having been healthy all my life, this was a major shock and of course disappointment.
Currently, I have started antidepressants which I know take a month to reach full effect, and an antianxiety drug.
After the surgery recovery, I plan to find ways to volunteer in the schools in my area and have signed up for a "forever learning" course where I hope to meet new friends who are also retired.
Until then, wish me luck and take a lot of time to plan what you will do after retirement.