It’s been a little over a month since I retired, so I thought it would be a good time for a bit of omphaloskepsis. I’m still coming to terms with the situation, and the concept still seems weird as all get out, but the reality hasn’t hit. It’s more like my summers used to be when I was a teacher, so it hasn’t felt that different. It’s been more like an extended vacation. Since it’s now post-July 4th the Back-to-School sales have already started. I’m slowly relinquishing the anxiety attacks that used to hit when I saw those, wondering if we were going to get everything done over the summer in time. It had gotten so bad that just driving by a school – any school – induced panic.
I think it will really hit home first when I get my first retirement check next week, then when everyone is actually heading back to school, and I’m not. I did get a formal letter from the Department of Education just this morning with a certificate marginally suitable for framing.
Speaking of anxiety attacks, I’ve been having nightmares about my former job. These usually take several forms. For some reason I have to go back to the office to do something and I find that the new guy has done something absurd like pulling out all of the network cabling. Or, people from the district show up at my home, somehow not letting me escape. Then there are variations. Glynda told me that nightmares like this followed her retirement for months. Oh joy.
I actually did get a call about a file from the office. It was one they couldn’t find (although I had clearly shown them where it was before I left.) When I tried to log into my district Google Docs to retrieve it for them, my password had either been changed or the account deleted. Oh well. I guess they are completely out of luck, and I’m off the hook. It’s not unexpected, but it seems a bit…abrupt. So, if you’re a friend from the district reading this, don’t try sending anything to my school e-mail account – I won’t get it.
Apart from those things about which I’ve blogged previously, here’s what else has been happening…
First, I’m finding I have lots more time for some pursuits, but less time for other things I used to do. I’ve been traveling quite a bit. I think there was a stretch where I drove I-26 multiple weekends in a row, going to various paddling engagements, Florida, Charleston, etc., etc. However, I find that I haven’t taken the time to blog or to read as much as I did. Our yard looks great, but I still haven’t the boxes I brought home from the office, or gotten my home office set up correctly.
I’m taking a graduate course to renew my teacher certification one last time. The work is trivial, but the motivation has been somewhat lacking. I find I have a decreasing tolerance for Educationese.
Folks have been coming to me with lots of ideas and projects “now that you have the time…” Some of these have been quite interesting, such as a video project for chemistry education for high school teachers…
…Others, not so much 🙂 I’m still procrastinating on other household projects.
On the plus side, I’ve only worn socks twice since retirement, and shoes as infrequently as possible. I have had to wear a necktie once for my cousin’s funeral. While I prefer to not wear ties, I haven’t gone out and destroyed my collection, or have foresworn them as did my father-in-law when he retired.
I have already lost track of days. Laura convinced me to get a pill box for my daily vitamins and prescriptions, and that helps keep the days straight. She says it’s more efficient in the morning. Of course, why do I need such efficiency now? I think the stricture is more important than efficiency at this point. The one big problem is that my OCD kicks in if I have to refill this thing during the middle of the week.
I sleep later, but I’m still an early riser. I now get up because I want to. I don’t dress by flashlight anymore unless it’s an expedition day and I have to get an early start. I guess that change of sleep habit contributes to losing track of days.
I haven’t driven on eastbound I-85 at all. I’ve only gone as far as Greer on Wade Hampton Boulevard. I’d like to keep it that way, at least for a little while.
So, I’m sure I’ll fall into a better routine, and that will help straighten out the days. I’ve had no lack of things to keep me busy, and apart from the weird feeling of having reached this stage at so early an age, retirement seems to have suited me just fine.