Tag Archive | retirement

Taking Steps


Today seems to be an auspicious day around here. Retirement day has arrived for so many of my colleagues. Due to some company restructuring this is the final work day for a varied collection of friends, colleagues, and acquaintances.  Some have celebrated their accomplishments and milestone quietly with family and close friends and others are having wide sweeping parties. We had a dress-up Groovy 70’s party to celebrate one person today. It was so fun to see the happy atmosphere and what a great way to take advantage of the timing.  The journey for them has led to an introspective review of my own journey.

For the most part I have spent my career in this one company. I have worked part-time, full-time, and for a brief stretch as a stay-at-home mom. All have their advantages. But it’s the trip down memory lane that we took with my friend Carol that has touched me. I left this company once before when we relocated to another state. I left “kicking and screaming” as they say as it was not part of my personal plan. And yet the experience was great and ripe with personal growth and irreplaceable memories with my children. Then when we returned to Cincinnati, I reluctantly returned to work here knowing it was what my family needed financially. Since then I have approached work so much differently. I no longer cling to or run to a role based on the work or advancement opportunity alone. I approach the changes knowing that there is someone where I’m going that I am destined to meet. Some personal or spiritual connection that is lining itself up with my path. And it has come true in every case.

As I look at my friends who are retiring, I can feel the call of change beckoning me as well. Not to retire (just yet) anyway. But to come to another area of the business. There are people to meet, and connections to make that are critical for my life’s journey. I am open to the change – with one step on the path of excitement and one step on the path of longing for that which is familiar. It takes courage to take the foot off that last step and reach for the unknown. I feel my courage growing.

I encourage you to step out on your path … and be blessed!

And So You Begin – original poem


AND SO YOU BEGIN!

Weaving through the hours and days of shifting emotions,

I see you spinning from one expression to another.

One moment with excitement and anticipation.

Another with a sigh of remembrance and connection.

Change twirling about your feet, anxious to overtake you.

One more box packed and another farewell complete.

Trying desperately to focus on the work at hand,

You finish a task, and pass it on.

Someone else will see it through and champion your ideas.

They didn’t have the vision, but caught it from you.

It is not easy to move through the detangling process.

You gave your time, talent, passion, and heart.

You received recognition for your achievements.

And soon there will be but a handful who remember.

With that realization your mood shifts again.

You twirl to meet the new adventure with semi-open arms.

A quick glance back reveals those who will miss you.

Sending heartfelt love and appreciation in your direction.

But you are now crossing the bridge into another land.

An adventure known only in stories, fantasies, and dreams.

And yet, the first step has become clearer and

Awaits your committed but hesitant move.

You are now on the bridge toward retirement.

You, still being you, but in a new light.

This old work is unfinished and yet very complete.

Discovery is now the work of the day.

Your time as arrived, more swiftly than you thought.

And so … you begin!

~ Barbara Bernard Miller

The things I could do …


It’s true … the days are getting longer.  As we get closer and closer to summer the light is lasting longer. It’s wonderful to go to work and come home from work in the sunshine. I’m not a fan of the coming heat, but the light is a welcome companion.

And yet, even now there’s so much I want to do, need to do, must do that the days still seem short. I know we cannot extend the number of hours in a day. And frankly, I wouldn’t want to because I’d fill those up too.  But now as I see so many of my friends leaving work to retire, my mind day dreams about what I could do without work taking up most of my waking hours.

I was talking to a friend about this yesterday. She’s retiring in June and we chatted about her next steps. She’ll continue to be a chair person for some of the volunteer activities at the big tennis tournament that comes to town each year. She’s thinking about working with dogs and training them to be both adoptable as well as training them to be healing pets. What wonderful aspirations.

I know I’m just a tad bit too young to be ready for this step but I know I’m creating my list of what I’d do. I want to learn photography, volunteer in a variety of places that require workday help, pick up some artsy classes – painting or stained glass making or pottery. There’s so many possibilities. I know I want to continue with my writing. By then I hope to have my 2nd book finished and maybe working on a 3rd.

All the books I’ve wanted to read would become my daily friends. The places I want to go all over the world with people to meet, and cultures to experience would take much of my money but leave me with an investment in connections and discovery.

Yikes I better stop day dreaming for today or I’ll find myself taking a leap I’m not quite ready for if I keep this up. What are you day dreaming up if time was abounding and plenty? Be blessed!