I am 53 this year, and realistically about a dozen years from retirement age. And the mere thought of retirement terrifies me.
For most people that is likely because of finances, because statistically so many are behind in their savings. Me, not so much. M and I did get a late start on retirements savings for different reasons, yet once we climbed out of debt and saved a little emergency fund money, I got both of us started on IRA and whatever retirement savings our jobs offered. It still feels like we are behind on our savings, but I am of the opinion that we will likely never feel like enough is enough. For me savings as much as we can while having joy and adventure in our life is critical. Plus, I know our home will be paid off in approximately 8 years and 5 months, if not sooner, and needs/desires are pretty simple. We dream of cost effective travel – maybe an RV – but we could be perfectly content in our home and neighborhood if our senior citizen budget or health does not allow us a lot of adventuring.
So yeah, finances are part of my terror. Mostly, though, it’s wonder what I will do with my days when employment ceases.
I suppose I could volunteer, and I might. But I like that less than the idea of having some small bookkeeping or consulting job that I can work at on my own timetable. Right now I feel like I need some productive purpose that will get me out of the house and obsessing over something other than me and my own stuff.
M is basically retired now … his job is the house, his running, his keeping up with his running groups. if that all stops someday there are other hobbies he enjoys and right now does not feel like he has time to devote to them. I wonder how we managed to have kids underfoot, full-time jobs, and still pursue reloading and practical target shooting, hiking and such in the days when we did a lot of that. The running and exercise was not quite so prominent, but still … we crammed a lot into our child-rearing years.
This is another area where M and I differ and our personalities complement. In my ideal world I will still have my part-time gig and working 10-15 hours a month. From the road. From a table in our RV. Our health will remain good, my body responding consistently to whatever medicines I must take at that point, and we will still walk/run/bike/hike, even if it is slower and takes us longer to get from point A to point B. And when we are home and roaming our greenbelt and local hiking/biking/running locales we will be even more delighted to be back to what is familiar and known to us after so many years and visits.
Even in my ideal world I work at something. I have no desire to be a greeter at Walmart, but I also cannot see myself not doing something. I guess I have a few more years to figure out what to pursue next.