I have never regretted retiring early. Not one day. I was ready to leave the rat race long before. No, no regrets.
What I did fall into was a bit of a retirement rut. It was the first time in years hubby and I could relax away the morning together with no demands and no expectations. We took our time unpacking and we took our time evaluating what needed to be done in the house we bought.
The problem with relaxing is it is easy to do it too much. It’s just like eating. It is so enjoyable and releases those endorphins. It became so pleasurable that I lost my way a bit.
It takes an effort to recenter. We have changed our lifestyle. Now we enjoy our morning walk as well as our morning coffee. We spend more time cooking together and reducing all those too pleasurable sugar and fat laden desserts with healthier alternatives. Neither of us feels like we have sacrificed and we have lost weight as an unexpected outcome, so it was a win win situation.
I took some art classes soon after I retired. Unfortunately, I also had some close family members who were ill and as a result some difficult losses to contend with. Then when the work on the house started, it was all too much and too chaotic. I gave them up.
There is a leveling out now. It did not come for me without seeking it out. I have become very aware of my inner critic and my ego and am learning to hush their voices in my head. I am writing and have returned to taking classes. I am finding inspiration everywhere.
Retirement can be the most wonderful time of life. As I sit here writing this, I have the doors open. The birds and the wind-chimes in the background are very relaxing in their melodious harmony. I enjoyed my walk and my breakfast and look forward to my day.
The addition of morning meditation really seems to be helping me. I do not always understand what comes up. Some days it seems to just be chatter. No matter what happens during that hour, at the end I am fully awake and engaged — ready to start my day. What a welcome change!
As nice as it is, retirement does not come without ruts. They can be small or deep and mucky. It’s up to us to steer clear of them or find our way out of them.