It has been about six months since my husband retired....it has been an interesting six months...the first two months felt like we were just on an extended holiday....once September came around, reality started trickling in...some interesting facts about being retired...( well, my husband is but I’m not...BUT I am affected by it...some good, some not so good)
The good is that my husband is around most of the time....I’ve waited 46 years for him to not leave in the morning and return in the late afternoon....it’s rather pleasant!
Another thing is that he is available to do some of the appointments with our kids that up til now, have been completely left up to me!
He’s also very determined to help me a lot more around the house....some chores that physically I’ve been struggling with in the last few years, he has declared that he will be doing from now on!
We still can’t just up and go away for a few days or even an overnight, without making caregiver arrangements for our kids BUT we can go somewhere, on a whim....just for the afternoon..
IF, we want to sleep in a bit on a weekday morning, that option is now available!
So, those are some of the pros that I can think of, off the top of my head.....
Well, there is this whole living on a pension and not a regular pay cheque being deposited in the account every two weeks..and other than the obvious , it screws up a regular grocery shopping day ( because you used to do it when it was pay day) ...now, it’s usually..’oh we’re out of eggs, or bread or deodorant...we’d better go and get a few things’.....
You forget what day it is! Suddenly, in the middle of the week...you think it’s only Tuesday and our shocked to find out that it’s Thursday! ....and you don’t count the days til the weekend any more because weekends , except for going to church on Sunday...are the same as the other days....and the saddest part is....you don’t get excited over long, three day weekends anymore...in fact, you find yourself surprised when you realize that the upcoming weekend, IS A THREE DAY WEEKEND!!
Living on a pension is unsettling.....knowing that you have a set amount of money that has to last you the rest of your living days...is a little scary....and even though, your husband says that he’s budgeted for a few larger travelling trips in his pension budget and to relax because he wants to travel....you still feel somewhat apprehensive about spending the money on it!
Then there’s the gifts...you know birthday, Christmas..etc. For the last number of years, I’ve had a set amount....now, husband says...we have to cut back the amount...we’re on a pension, don’t ya know....I told him then he can be the one tell everyone that they’re going to be getting less!
The other thing about a pension is this.....I’m used to saving for things...if I want to do some kind of home improvement or get a big ticket item...then I divide the cost by months and put aside the amount required each month, to meet that goal.....the other day, I said something about saving for something....husband looked at me with a ‘sad, it’ll be alright dear, look’ ...and informed me that there isn’t anymore saving...we just take it out of the pension.....WHAT.....NO MORE SAVING!! That’s impossible...there’s just no security in that! Totally uncomfortable with this concept!!
Another con , for my husband...IS....THAT HE IS HOME EVERYDAY! ...yes, I know I said that was in the pro column....but you see....he’s not used to being around the kids, all day, every day.....he gets irritated with them, he doesn’t understand why they do the things they do or don’t do.....that gives me a brand new occupation....mediator!
On the whole, when people say..’so, how’s retirement?’.....quite often I remind them that I’M not retired...I’m still doing all the same things that I’ve always had to do....BUT I do have the positive and negative affects of retirement....I think that’s as close as I’ll ever get....but retirement is a little more relaxing than life used to be....so, that’s a welcome change....do we sit around looking for things to do? No, we are still as busy as ever....but now we don’t ‘ necessarily have to get to a store to get a certain thing because it’s the only time we have to do it’ mentality anymore....the pressure is not as great...which is lovely.
I actually think we’re still getting used to figuring out this retirement thing...and that’s okay...
And I know it sounds sappy...but as long as we’re together in this new adventure than I’m content....