Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Observations from reading my 2010 blog posts

I ordered a soft-bound book of my blog entries for 2010. Half of the entries were written before I quit my job on June 25; the remainder were written afterwards. When it arrived on Monday, I read it in two sittings. It wore me out to remember all I did! Here's some of what I was reminded of.

1. I was both excited and terrified to be ending my job. Excited because my time would be my own, terrified because what if I didn't have enough to do or ran out of money?

2. I had three goals and it was important for me to be useful.

3. I was an inveterate maker of to-do lists.

4. I didn't like taking the ESL class I'd signed up for as part of my first goal. It bothered me that I wasn't good at it, and I had to pay a fee to extend my initial six-month time limit to a year, but I finished the class.

5. I was looking forward to having enough time to read.

I've learned a few things since 2010:

I'm now accustomed to having my time be my own. There've been a few days when I was bored, but that usually has more to do with a state of mind than an actual dearth of things to do.

I do have to pay attention to money, like when one unexpected requirement is a new furnace, or once again I'm persuaded we need more timeshare points. I have learned that if I only have a mocha on the weekends rather than every day (as in "every day for the last 12 years"), not only do I save money but I lose weight. I'm gratified to see that our "meals out" expenses this year are less than last. Maybe it's because we're home to eat.

I guess it's not as important to be useful as I thought. Relaxed and spontaneous is a good alternative. This is embarrassing to admit. I did join the Planning Commission of my town, and I did work eight days for Habitat for Humanity, but that's it. Probably not enough.

I still have a to-do list, but it's pretty short, and stuff gets moved around or crossed off without my losing sleep over it.

I don't want to be an ESL teacher, and I don't have to be. Fortunately, there are many qualified experts, and they like doing it.

I am current with the magazines I read and my current stack of books has only nine items in it. I am using the library way more than at any time of my life except childhood.

Thirteen trips in one year might be excessive to some people, but there's not a single one I wish I hadn't taken. The best ones, though, have been when we've traveled independently rather than in a group. I'll remember that when I'm planning for future times away.

Jeans bought used on EBay fit just as well as those bought new at Nordstrom for twice or three times the price.

I still wear makeup when I'm going out of the house.

I'm a regular at my exercise class three mornings a week, but I must say I love the other two mornings when I don't have to get up as early.

I've spent more time in my blogging community than I thought I would, and the relationships have become important.

I can't take my body and my health for granted. Keep moving, keep moving, keep moving, but watch where I step.


Randi said...

This is exactly why I love blogging--it's like having a running journal. I loved reading your reflections on your life.

#1Nana said...

Yeah, me too!

I was just thinking about printing out the blog posts, but like many things these days, I put it off for another day.

Perpetua said...

Welcome to retirement, Linda! I can remember the same kind of taking stock a year after I retired and finding that I was using my time rather differently than i had expected to.

Enjoy the trips and do what you feel like doing, after years of having to do things. :-)

Anonymous said...

It took me 6 months and a day to get used to retirement but I found plenty to do. I retired when I was 41 and had promised my wife, when we got married 56 years ago, that I would retire when I reached 40. So I missed it by one year. I did lots of things after I "retired." Among them was...

Out on the prairie said...

i can lose track of what day it is.I don't take the paper so sometimes look at one when I stop for coffee.Yesterday had a Sunday feel, perhaps Saturday.LOL

DJan said...

How did you get the bound copies of your journal? Did you do it yourself? I guess I missed that post.

You are a very dynamic person, and it comes through in every little thing you do. I'm so glad you enjoy your life, I sure am! (Enjoying yours as well as my own.)

Georgia said...

I love this blog entry! I too score jeans regularly on ebay. Alan is beginning to relax a little more after six months of retirement. Thanks for sharing your words.

marciamayo said...

Keep moving, keep moving, keep moving, but watch where I step. I love that line and so true. Were you pleased with the quality of your blog book? What company did you use? I know of one called from blog to book or something like that. It's a great idea.

Rita said...

I was wondering, too, how you got a bound copy of your blog posts?

Congrats! Sounds like you have had some good priority shifts. :):) I am a notorious list maker, but these days I think of them as guidance and goals--hehe! Don't sweat the small stuff, as they say. :)

Beth said...

Yes, do watch your literal step. Isn't it wonderful to be a kid again when everyday is a summer day all to yourself which you can use anyway you wish?

Tom said...

I, too, find myself spending more time blogging than I ever thought I would. And I also use the library more than I used to.

Now if only, like you, I could exercise three mornings a week! (But I DO keep up my membership at the local sports club .. doesn't that count for something?!?)

Deere Driver said...

When I get to town, let thrift store shop for my Seattle souvenir.

Dr. Kathy McCoy said...

Isn't it fun to be making discoveries about yourself at this age? I'm with you on the saving mochas as a special treat and using the library a lot. My husband and I hit three libraries every week. And who knew what a wonderful experience blogging would be! I really enjoy reading your comments -- in this post and all the others!

June said...

As I said to Nana the other day:

Grandmother Mary said...

The last two resonate especially. 13 trips excessive? Never! Good for you. In fact set 20 as your goal for next year!

Deb Shucka said...

What lovely reflecting here. You make retirement sound so wonderful and so fulfilling.

Anonymous said...

We must stay moving and active in retirement or we'll rust away and end up in the junk yard.

Jenn Flynn-Shon said...

How cool that you put your posts into a book. What a nice little time capsule of your life to look back on and cherish later (and now too of course!). Sounds like you're living up to all the dreams you set forth when you retired -- basically to do what you wanted no matter what that was :-)