Retired: Lost, Sad....Very Sad
After years of working, my wife told me that I could retire at the end of 2014, since after years of saving, we could afford to. I disliked my job, especially the 40 mile each way commute.
Back in 2005, on a lark, we decided to take a vacation in Arizona. We immediately fell in love with the southwest and eventually bought a home in a 55 plus community for when we retired. For the next several years we spent all of our vacations in our retirement home, looking forward to the day when we could move there permanently, or at least the winter months. (We are from the Northeast.)
The day I retired we started a 4 day drive to Arizona. Almost immediately I felt completely lost, a fish out of water, (my wife's term.) I missed my children even though they're grown, but still live only a few miles from where we raised them. I wasn't interested in any activities, like golf or tennis. The community offered so many things, I just didn't show any interest. Volunteering wasn't a real option either for a number of reasons.
After a couple of months, my wife knew I was in a very deep funk. The lack of structure my job offered, along with missing my children made every day very difficult. She even bought me 2 books on retirement, but nothing seemed to help.
To make a long story shorter, after many hours of discussion, we sold our retirement home. I am wracked by sadness and guilt over giving up the house. My wife loved the house, and it was probably the only thing she truly wished for in almost 40 years of marriage, and I took it away from her, because I couldn't cope with retirement.
It's a very sad time for both of us. Hopefully, we can rent a place in Arizona for the winter, then perhaps I won't feel as bad about giving up our home.
Being back in the Northeast has done nothing to change my outlook. The days are long, and sometimes I get very weepy. The best part of the day is bedtime, because I get to lie down in the dark, and for a few hours I don't have to try and fill the day.
Apologies for the long letter. Would sure like to hear from anyone who's had a similar experience. Maybe it's just time to get myself together and quit feeling bad for myself. Easier said than done.