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Old 07-16-2019, 09:33 AM
 
Location: Verde Valley AZ
8,629 posts, read 9,701,047 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goingstrong View Post
I've moved through life in a series of phases - the carefree single phase, the young couple with kids in tow phase, the stressed out teen parenting phase, the empty nester phase, and the grandparenting phase. I happily ended each phase without a backward glance until I arrived at this new one. Due to a job change that allows for her mother to pick her up after school, I am free from after school childcare for youngest granddaughter. I have long looked forward to having more free time but now that itís here, I realize that the end of this phase puts me one step closer to the phase I do not want to enter. The one that I dread. The one that Iím going through with my mother. The phase where you are no longer responsible for other family members, but instead are someone that other family members need to be responsible for. I donít think my mother realized when she shifted into this phase of her life - she only needed a little help around the house, the vacuum cleaner was suddenly much heavier and she couldnít see well enough to notice the dust and dirt collecting, and all of a sudden bill collectors were calling even though she was sure she sent them a payment but she couldnít quite figure out her checkbook. I donít want to go there - Iím not ready for that phase. Will I know it when it happens - will I care? As I look forward to more freedom and travel this knowing of what is finished and what is yet to come hangs over me like a black cloud. Iím sure I will work through it, but I think for me this will be the most difficult phase of my life yet. What phase of life are you in and what has been the most difficult for you?

I'd like to recommend a couple of books for you. "Passages" by Gail Sheehy and "New Passages", also by her. Fascinating reads and covers life from age 20 on. The first book starts at birth, I believe, but the second is mostly devoted to the older phases. I'm sure your library has them. I bought them years ago and still read parts of them at times. I'm sure you would find lots of "truths" in them.
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Old 07-16-2019, 07:24 PM
 
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My mom lived alone until a week before she died at 90 and her sister lives alone at 94. Worry if and when it ever happens.
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Old 07-16-2019, 09:35 PM
 
13,053 posts, read 15,418,128 times
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I'm sort of in the same boat and I think that's why I am balking at retiring. My granddaughter will soon be 5 and will be going to full day kindergarten. I have watched her several days a week from birth. Last year she went to half day pre-K and I did some of the before/after school care and drop off/pickup. I work at home and my schedule is flexible, so I have been able to work my schedule around hers when I need to.


One day it hit me that things will never be the same for us. For five years we have had two or three days a week together at least and many overnights. She is going off to real school where she will hopefully make friends and do well and won't need/want me as much - which is as it should be. But still makes me sad and I spent one day last week crying.


Before I knew there was a grandchild on the way, I was so enjoying the freedom of an empty nest, DH and I having the house to ourselves. My parents had been sick and died and I had gone through that and handled their estate and I no longer was dealing with their health issues or their estate, no longer raising kids, and it was a time of peace and no worries. And then we had a granddaughter and everything changed.


I have been looking forward to retiring and now I'm not sure. If I work a few more years we will be in a better financial position, but it's not so much that. I just started thinking if I stop working, and no longer have granddaughter here, am I going to feel useless? Will my days be empty and remind me even more that she's not here? If I'm not contributing financially and I'm not needed nearly as much to help with granddaughter, am I going to feel worthless? Will I be so idle that I overthink everything and obsess about everything? I don't know.
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Old 07-16-2019, 10:50 PM
 
10,819 posts, read 8,079,355 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luzianne View Post
I have been looking forward to retiring and now I'm not sure. If I work a few more years we will be in a better financial position, but it's not so much that. I just started thinking if I stop working, and no longer have granddaughter here, am I going to feel useless? Will my days be empty and remind me even more that she's not here? If I'm not contributing financially and I'm not needed nearly as much to help with granddaughter, am I going to feel worthless? Will I be so idle that I overthink everything and obsess about everything? I don't know.
Using your grandchild as the basis of your sense of self worth won't end well. It's not fair to her or to yourself.
Just imo, you might consider professional counseling to help you deal with this issue.
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Old 07-16-2019, 11:26 PM
 
13,053 posts, read 15,418,128 times
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Originally Posted by biscuitmom View Post
Using your grandchild as the basis of your sense of self worth won't end well. It's not fair to her or to yourself.
Just imo, you might consider professional counseling to help you deal with this issue.
I don't need professional counseling and I am not using my grandchild as a basis of my sense of self worth. It's just a transition. Six years ago a grandchild was the last thing on my mind. Obviously they come into your life and steal your heart. It's just going to be different. And just like I was sad when my oldest child graduated from high school and went to college, I am sad after five years of spending a lot of time with my granddaughter that that is going to end when she goes to school. I said myself that I hope she makes lots of friends and does well, because that is as it should be. I wouldn't want it any other way. What I am feeling are normal emotions, not something I need counseling for. :roll eyes:

I have worked ever since I was 16. My granddaughter has been my constant companion for 5 years. When suddenly the things that have been constants in your life are gone, there of course is going to be a feeling of loss and uncertainty. Your whole world just changed.

Last edited by luzianne; 07-16-2019 at 11:49 PM..
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Old 07-17-2019, 12:43 AM
 
Location: Whereever we have our RV parked
8,831 posts, read 7,728,859 times
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Retirement for us has been much tougher than all the others. Since retirement we have both had major health issues. So we have had some fun and carefree times, but, this year has been real tough. So its a mixture, much like most of life.
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Old 07-17-2019, 01:08 AM
 
Location: Haiku
4,188 posts, read 2,603,300 times
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I'm in the phase where I read the obituaries some times and get to wondering what my life summary would read like. I have noticed there are a lot of ho-hum obits with the usual loving kids, loving family, blah blah, but then you will encounter one where the dearly departed had a pretty dramatic life. Anyway, I am in the last trimester of my life which is not that big a deal but I wonder a bit how its all going to unwind. I just hope it doesn't involve LTC.
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Old 07-17-2019, 07:44 AM
 
13,053 posts, read 15,418,128 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TwoByFour View Post
I'm in the phase where I read the obituaries some times and get to wondering what my life summary would read like. I have noticed there are a lot of ho-hum obits with the usual loving kids, loving family, blah blah, but then you will encounter one where the dearly departed had a pretty dramatic life. Anyway, I am in the last trimester of my life which is not that big a deal but I wonder a bit how its all going to unwind. I just hope it doesn't involve LTC.
Iím often surprised at how rich and full many older peopleís (older than us) lives were in their younger years. Even though travel was not as easy as it is now, it seems like they got around a lot, traveled, had adventures that most people today just donít have. We seem boring in comparison.
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Old 07-17-2019, 12:41 PM
 
Location: NJ
10,774 posts, read 21,396,582 times
Reputation: 9025
Quote:
Originally Posted by TwoByFour View Post
I'm in the phase where I read the obituaries some times and get to wondering what my life summary would read like. I have noticed there are a lot of ho-hum obits with the usual loving kids, loving family, blah blah, but then you will encounter one where the dearly departed had a pretty dramatic life. Anyway, I am in the last trimester of my life which is not that big a deal but I wonder a bit how its all going to unwind. I just hope it doesn't involve LTC.
Best suggestion I have, write your own then go make funeral arrangements, bring your obit with you to give the funeral home. My dad and I wrote his but we knew he'd eventually die from terminal leukemia. I don't know if what we wrote cost extra to publish, I assume it did but I wanted to make sure my dad's obit was correct with his achievements with the rescue squad and NJ Gasoline Retailers. We also included he had a direct hand in keeping self serve gas out of NJ.

My mother and father in law had no personalized obit which is a shame because they did a lot of stuff. I had told my hub to speak to his mom while she was in hospice 3 months but he didn't. I didn't fly out to Ohio or I would have spoken to her myself.
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Old 07-17-2019, 02:16 PM
 
2,264 posts, read 1,118,185 times
Reputation: 9216
Quote:
Originally Posted by goingstrong View Post
What phase of life are you in and what has been the most difficult for you?

The teen years were the most difficult for me. Everything else has been a piece of cake....so far.

knock on wood.

At this time, I've retired fairly recently, enjoying it immensely. Of course, everything will go downhill at some point as I get older, but I don't spend time thinking about it since there is nothing I can do about it. I just enjoy the here and now.
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