Many people hear the word “retirement” and they think of older workers finally being able to leave their jobs and not return – being able to do all those things they couldn’t do when they held their jobs.
Truth be told, at least from the dictionary perspective, “retire” (and thus retirement) can mean: 1. To go away or withdraw for the purpose of privacy, shelter, or rest. 2. To go to bed. 3. To withdraw oneself from business, public life, or active service. 4. To fall back; retreat, as troops under siege. 5. To move back, recede, or appear to recede. There are several more meanings, but I think you get the idea. As a culture, we equate the meaning of “retirement” most closely with meaning #3.
We picture lots of leisure time, no schedules, and no alarm clocks. While this may become a reality for some, and they may enjoy it very much, for others that retirement can mean other things.
If you’ve been a busy person during your employment years, after a few weeks or months of that “leisure time,” you may find yourself going stir crazy and need to find something to occupy your time – like a part-time job. For others, although they would really like to take advantage of retirement, they may find that due to financial resources, they, too, must consider going back to at least a part-time job.
On the other hand, there are those who have had hobbies that they just never really had the time for that now they can turn their attention to doing. Once they do, they find themselves as busy as when they were working – happily so, but still busy. Others may find that family begins to take up their leisure time. More time may be spent with siblings, children, or even grandchildren. Now, if this is something you really enjoy, bravo! If not, you could find retirement just isn’t what you thought it would be. The stories and circumstances are many and are just as individualistic as the rest of our journey has been up to this point.
For myself, although I haven’t held an outside job for some 14 years, I truly believe I’m just as busy as I was when I was in the workforce. In fact, if I had to take even a part-time job, I haven’t a clue where I would fit it in.
The interesting thing is that there are even other parts of my life that I’ve tried to “retire” from, some more than once, and I’ve been drawn back into them. One of those is being the head (High Priestess) of our Temple. I’ve been considered an Elder for over 20 years, but every time I try to retire from being an active High Priestess, I find myself back in the center of that Circle leading the rites of worship and the rites of passage. I know there must be a reason for this, I’m just not sure what it is.
There are a couple other areas of my life that the same thing has happened on a smaller scale, but still it has happened. Perhaps my time of retirement hasn’t really occurred yet where these things are concerned. I don’t know.
There are a few things I see myself doing until the time comes for me to cross the Bridge of Light. Amongst those things are doing astrology charts. I absolutely love doing them and then talking to the person about the chart they’ve just had me do. I’ve been this way since my early 20s and I don’t see it stopping any time soon. If someone was to ask me what my passion in life was, I’d have to say astrology. Yes, technically, it is a job because I do get paid for the work I do, but it’s a job filled with joy.
Then there’s writing. I really enjoy it. If you had ask me in high school English if I thought I’d like to be a writer, my answer would have probably been a resounding, “NO!” As the years have passed, I’ve discovered that being able to write on my own terms (rather than at the whim of an English teacher’s assignment) has provided me with both challenges and pleasures. I think I understand a little what it must be like for journalists to find something new and interesting to write about on a regular basis. Every two weeks, I let my mind wander and see what I can come up with to write about here on this site. The weeks in between, although guided a lot by celestial happenings, still leave me with some challenges to find something interesting to write as an introduction to that celestial information. Yes, writing is another thing I will probably always do.
The final thing I will probably always do is offer spiritual counseling to people. I love to help them see new perspectives and watch the proverbial “light bulb” go on over their heads in those “Aha!” moments. Another “job” filled with joy. Assisting people in re-empowering themselves is such a rewarding thing.
I guess what I’m trying to relate here is that “retirement” can mean anything you want it to mean. It can consist of anything you want it to or be anything you want or need it to be. That includes not retiring at all. Like I said, it’s very individualistic. We each need to decide what it means for us.
Here’s to you and here’s to a journey that is uniquely yours, even through your “golden” years. May it be filled with joy!!!