Retirement not going well

by Jan Hyder
(Meridian, ID)

I retired in January of this year after working 47 years in the medical field.

I spent 25 years working long hard hours as an xray tech and then went on to spend another 22 years as an ultrasound tech, again long hard hours. I loved doing both of these things and they were both good paying professions for a single mom.

I was more than ready to retire both mentally and physically. I gave a year's notice and spent that year gearing down towards retirement. I went to 3 days a week and that went well but I was always concerned about what I was going to do with all my spare time when the time came.

I have never been a hobby person, I like to read and work in my yard and I love TV. I am also pretty much a loner. I envisioned taking some classes, maybe going to the gym. I really dreaded being that person who just sat around all day.

I already has foot surgery scheduled for right after I retired and it went well, until I had to go back in for a revision 2 weeks later and then 4 weeks after that I actually fractured a bone in the same foot. Then I started having back issues due to my gait changing (from walking the big boot they gave me}.

It's now the first week of July, the foot is healed but still causes some pain and the back is better but I just feel like crap. Oh, forgot to mention that in May my hands starting going numb and now my finger tips are all numb all the time. Just had nerve testing and got the diagnosis bilateral carpal tunnel and will have to have surgery for that.

I told my Dr. how crappy I was feeling: extreme fatigue, muscle pain, and weight gain. She tested me for everything and all tests were normal.

I am sure I'm depressed over all the medical issues but I also think I need to get up and start doing a few more things on a daily basis. You know, use it or lose it.

I have developed a small routine to get my day going. I think I have been feeling guilty that I don't have as much going on as other retired people seem to. It seems like they are always on the go but I have just recently realized that I have never been that person. I really enjoy just drinking coffee on the patio and watching the birds at the feeders.

I'm just hoping that I am about finished with the medical problems.

Comments for Retirement not going well

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by: Mary

I envy those who don't mind being alone for the most part. I do enjoy coffee and sitting outside, some TV and I spend a lot of time on my IPad (that's my reading).

But being a widow, I do get lonely even though I have a couple of good friends. It's just not the same.

But sometimes I feel this need to be busy busy and doing things and I realize it just to keep loneliness away. I wish I was at peace like you. Don't fight it, enjoy it.

Sounds like me
by: Nancy from Texas

I am also an introvert. I enjoy watching the birds (feeding them), Amazing creatures! Amazing how they build nests and will share their lives in front of us.

How I have wished for a friend like you! I love my plants and I get so much pleasure planting them and watching the beauty of nature. There is nothing wrong with us!!! We simply like a quieter life.

I was driving down the street and saw two birds sitting in an unusual tree and thought that would make a great picture. I am honestly thinking about photography as an outlet. There are many ways to share your loves.

Wished we we’re neighbors!

I broke my knee cap in April and believe me my world changed!! I hated having my mobility taken away. I am still in rehab but learning to use a cane while still feeling more secure with a walker.

Even though I am ten weeks post surgery, I have pain and recovery is slow. My gait has been affected and my back is painful too. Let’s face it, getting older means adapting to things in our body that are changing. I am going to fight for my mobility but I don’t enjoy it.

You are normal!! Your personality (introvert) is you. It’s me.

I bet you’re a fun and warm person!! Nature lovers usually are!

I am the same
by: plp green bay wi

I have no hobbies either but I have come to accept that I like sitting in the quiet, watching whatever, biking, and I just started kayaking. Now, this is summer so I can keep myself busy but I still worry about winter coming.

Do I wish I knitted or something? I just never had the patience or enough desire to learn.

I do biking and kayaking alone. None of my friends, the same age as me, will not do either. I bought an E-bike to make biking a total joy.

I liked my job/career also but I have come to like retirement better.

by: loyce!

Big club you're in and whether a loner or not, you--like all--are transitioning. Try alternative measures for your physical pain: Acupressure/acupuncture and join a health club for daily exercise with others. Be involved, loner or otherwise. We all need distraction on a positive level

I can relate
by: Nancy

Jan: I can certainly relate to your situation. I retired early (at 62) 5 years ago, because the stress of my administrative job was causing great stress which lead to some health issues. I miss my job but not the stress.

I think like most people who have spent most of their life working and raising a family, I don't have any hobbies, and my circle of friends is very small.

I used to love working in my flower garden, but I don't own a house any longer, so don't have that option available to me any more. I read a lot and try to limit my TV time, but that doesn't fill in all the hours.

My husband and I go to Yuma for the winter, and spend summers at home in Alberta. I did some volunteering this summer at a retirement home in the long time care area. I tried to find part time work for the summer, but didn't have any luck getting hired. I will try again next summer hopefully with better luck. I plan to apply for volunteer work this winter at the hospital in Yuma to fill in some time.

Transition into retirement is not easy for everyone. Some of us struggle to regain our identity after leaving a career we did for most of our life. Finding activities to keep us busy and fill our time is not always easy. I suggest you look into activities that appeal to you.

Don't feel guilty or be too hard on yourself if you sit and enjoy your coffee and watch the birds every day. I find the hardest part of transitioning into retirement is accepting that my full time working life is in the past and that I need to embrace life one day at a time, and accept "what will be will be". If you try to mold your life into what you think it should be, you are setting yourself up for disappointment.

My mantra: "Let go of what you think your life should be and embrace who you are."

Getting to know yourself, at last
by: Elna Nugent , Mass.

Jan: When people retire, it almost seems as if we are forced to get to know ourselves whether we want to or not.

Certain issues arise that force us to look ourselves in the mirror and find out who we are.

Our whole lives are filled with such busyness that we don't have time to find ourselves. There is probably a whole host of things that you don't know about yourself that you have been running away from even in the work you do which is helping others.

I think sitting- as you said- with a cup in hand is a great way to start. Just let it flow and get to know the amazing person that you are and are still to become.

to Jan
by: Lynn

Jan you are a perfect candidate for Yoga and Meditation. You will learn body flexibility in a gentle style and deep breathing and kind grateful thoughts.

Since you enjoy your own company this will help you be the loner you enjoy being and having lots of time to relax with your patio and your coffee but still be active. It will also get rid of any sadness and depression.

Good luck you are on your way to a joyful long life.

retirement not going well response
by: Anonymous

Well, first, let me say that WE LOOK EXACtLY alike. I kid you NOT. It is amazing. And we are both introverts.

Sorry to hear about these painful medical conditions. A foot problem and hands problems are limiting, and pain is so distracting!!!! ICE is your best friend for now. You know that, but I thought it was my duty to nag.

Also, I just want to say that my grandma was the MOST IMPORTANT PERSON IN MY LIFE. She had no hobbies, no job. She WAS KIND TO ME. So, I truly feel that may be your job now. BE KIND TO all people that you come across. At the end of a day, all that kindness piles up, right? Now you have time to be kind to people on the internet.

Coffee on the patio watching the birds and the tree leaves and the sky is AMAZING!!!!. Maybe there is a job title that correlates to a job description that says, "able to fully appreciate blue skies, bird songs, a good cup of coffee, etc." Then that could be your job title. "My work is assessment and appreciation".

Have fun. Find the books you like and enjoy them. Throw down the ones you don't like - you are not obligated to finish them or, for that matter, anything.

I do hope the ice helps. I personally love 15 by 20 inch rectangular gel bags.

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