11 Replies Latest reply on Mar 31, 2014 12:59 PM by BoBraxton

    Transitions

    steve544

      Retirement turned out not to be what I had expected. Both my and my wife's parents passed away before or shortly after I retired at the tender age of 54. But my parents' last years created a lot of anxiety as they were totally unprepared for assisted living and later a nursing home. After working at home making a successful full time job out my hobby of many years (trading and investing in global markets), I became gravely ill following brain surgery. My wife, who is an attorney and general counsel for the several family businesses, took care of me and gave me her undivided attention and support throughout my six-month convalescence. She did not want to leave me home alone and started taking me to work with her. Now I work part time in the family businesses in the area of corporate finance and as trustee of our 401-K plan. 

      It has been wonderful to do what I love and call it a job! It certainly is far away from my original career as an experimental psychologist!

      One never knows how things will turn out. But what started as almost a tragic death ended up in a renewed relationship with my wife, our son (from her previous marriage) and his wife. On February 6, 2010, they gave us the most precious gift: our first grandson. So our lives have really been blessed.

      I suppose the moral of my story is: Expect the unexpected, embrace it and turned it into something wonderful with the support of your family and friends.

        • Re: Transitions
          jkom51

          What a wonderful story! You are truly blessed, and you are quite right - the unexpected will happen to us no matter how well or poorly we plan. Adaptability is an crucial component of maturing as a person. It is the true success in life, I think.

          May your future continue bright!

            • Re: Transitions
              steve544

              Thank you for your kind words, jkm51! Yes, adaptability is a crucial component in maturing as a person. We are dealt the cards we have in life. What we do with them is up to us. I feel that as I finished a journey, I began another one. Where it will lead, I do not know. But with the care and support of loved ones and friends, I know it will have a happy ending.

              May your future also continue bright, my friend.

            • Re: Transitions
              Viking
              Good advice.  I had my full time work to part time work figured out quite well.  What I didn't expect was going from an active reserve Army officer to a retired officer at the same time.  It turned out that going from a lifetime of active and reserve military service to being a mere veteran was more psychologically distressful than the other areas of my life, for which I had so carefully planned.
              So, yes, expect the unexpected.
                • Re: Transitions
                  WillyW
                  I worked until I was 67 when, fed up with chasing  after grant money, I retired. I then decided that I needed some mechanism to gradually ween myself away from my professional interests. My selected mechanism was to write a book. Doing this allowed me to review the numerous aspects of my profession that I had lost contact with as a result of my administrative responsibilities. This turned out to be a lengthy  but interesting project lasting roughly 10 years. Admittedly I was less than dedicated and at times I thought that I would never reach the end of the tunnel; but I did and the book has just been published. Loud cheers!!! Now writing a book is not for everone but undertaking some sort of transitional project to get you from where you were to where you want to be is definitely worth considering.
                  Most important, whatever you decide to do, have fun.
                    • Re: Transitions
                      Since I didn't start my academic career until my children were well into school, I just didn't burn out when everyone else did.  So, at 72, I'm just now transitioning into retirement by...doing the same thing. Just somewhere else. A week ago I arrived at the Busan National University of Education in Busan, Korea and am teaching English classes to undergraduates and two sections of creativity and education to graduate students. The different culture, food, and language make everything feel new again. Across campus my students see me and either bow uncertainly or feel that they have grasped American manners by shouting "hi!" while waving frantically. I love it.
                      • Re: Transitions
                        ringo
                        I would love to know the title of your book. It sounds like an interesting read.
                          • Re: Transitions
                            Bob__K
                            Hi Ringo,
                            Apologies for the confusion, but I haven't written a book.  If I ever do, it will be on drug development.
                            Kind regards,
                            Bob
                            • Re: Transitions
                              WillyW
                              Ringo  ----Assuming that the querry re the title of the book was directed to me, the answer is "On Sea Ice". University of Alaska Press.
                              It's 660 pp long and can be had via Amazon for ~$60 which is a deal for such a large book. Its not a novel, its a technical book about the properties and behavior of sea ice; i.e the ice that forms when sea water freezes. Although the area covered by sea ice is decreasing, it still covers an appreciable percentage of the earth's surface. Its behavior is a factor in the climate riddle. You could understand much of the book  (~60%) without having a scientific background but the rest might be slow going. My background is in geophysics and I ended up working in glaciology. It was fun.
                              Willy Weeks
                            • Re: Transitions
                              BoBraxton

                              for me, also writing (daily, dedicated). Not in a book but my writing goes out on Twitter. Also was age 67 when I retired (began Medicare and Social Security direct deposits) when my spouse also retired. I am not quite as old as she is.