I had thought when my official retirement began in January, I’d jump into doing some of the things I always said I’d do “when I retire.” What I have actually done in much of my potentially productive time is thinking. It’s become clear to me there are some things that I’m not going to do after all, not because I can’t, but because I really don’t want to anymore. Ironically, while that realization is liberating – I can stop feeling guilty about not yet doing [fill in the blank] – it’s also daunting. I’m now facing the questions of what do I want to do, and what do I need to do to make things happen. It’s at this point that my life-long nemesis Procrastination shows up. Don’t think about it right now, she says. Post on Facebook. Play some Spider or Words With Friends, she says. Watch some television. You have plenty of time. And suddenly the first seven months of retirement has evaporated. Poof!
One frequent source of conflict between us is her desire to have something done as soon as she articulates it, and my desire to do things when it’s convenient for me. For example, she says, “I baked some cookies and there’s a bag on the counter for you.” I might respond, “I’ll pick them up this afternoon.” She gets irritated because what she really meant was “I baked some cookies and I’d like you take the bag on the counter with you now” and what I really meant was “I’m not finished my exercise walk (or whatever) and I’ll come back to get them when I’m done.” Stupid conversations like this are now dangerous; she’s already on an emotional roller coaster and it’s my job to protect her to the degree I am able. So I am making the effort to take action immediately – without rolling my eyes – when she makes a comment or “suggestion.” An unexpected benefit of changing my behavior pattern in this situation is that I’m feeling the urge to apply the change to other parts of my life.
I hope the result of this difficult decision will be more time and a renewed surge of creative energy that can be focused on different endeavors, some of those things I said I’d do “when I retired.” My heart grieves the losses of my friends and Dad, but I cherish what I learned from each of them and how they made my life much richer. I expect I will be able to say the same about this good-bye, too.
#good-byegirl #corgicharacters #newventures