After 36 years working at the center, I am finally retiring. Four weeks from today I will be a lady of leisure, at least until financial realities force me to take a job as a greeter at Wal-Mart to pay for my nursing home insurance. Since I have been employed since the age of 18, this is going to be different, to say the least. I will have to get my head around who I actually am without my job, or at least get my head around the idea that I don't have to be anybody in particular.
My co-workers, some at least, are having a hard time with my decision, too. They keep insisting I am going to be bored and miss my job. I'm 63 years old and work with toddlers who have low frustration tolerance, maniacal energy, and voices loud enough to break glass. I think I'll risk it.
My retired friends, on the other hand, have no regrets. Some of them wonder how they ever found time to work. That worries me. I was hoping that retirement would bring leisure time, lots of it, even if I have to devote a few hours a day to a strange practice I have heard of called "housework". What little I know of it seems to require taking some kind of "Pledge". I'm sure I can find out more on Google.
My BFF is also going to be retiring at the end of the year, now that her youngest is graduating from college, so we are looking forward to trips together to places our husbands don't want to visit and girlie lunches in tea rooms. Thirty years ago we used to go to marches and rallies together. Things change. Friendship hangs on.