Sunday, August 26, 2007


#74 - "I get that sinking feeling..."


"I get that sinking feeling" when I contemplate retirement. Not that I want to retire, and good thing that, for I'm afraid I couldn't if I did indeed want to. Retire, that is, in the sense of stopping doing the job I'm doing, to stop being employed, to stop going to work everyday, to stop earning a paycheck...a living.

The prospect of relying on savings, investments, retirement accounts (IRA's, annuities, etc), and SSI for the remainder of my days gives me the shivers. It's a fact that those collective funds could not last more than a few years in supporting my current lifestyle or even a pared down one.

My wife likes to quip when asked when I am planning to retire; "he can't retire until he stops spending money."

The fact is that too many people today out live their retirement nest egg. Plain and simple!

I like my work, I like going to work everyday. The work is mentally stimulating and instantly gratifying with little or no physicality associated with it. My work puts me into intimate contact with every age group from newborn to nonagenarians.

If you don't already know, you will soon enough find that advancing age and illness have a way of disrupting plans; plans to work "'til the end."

Here in our small town newspaper, the back page is where the obits are published. When folks ask me when I'm going to retire I say, "When you see my photograph on the back page of the Journal, don't look for me at work that day."

I get that sinking feeling when I think about outliving my retirement income.

15 Comments:

Blogger Elisabeth said...

I am extremely frightened of living my old days in utter poverty. My general feeling is that I will never be able to retire.

9:49 AM  
Blogger Churlita said...

My grandmother thought that when she retired, she could live forever on what she had saved. She was wrong. Her big joke was always that she didn't plan on living so long.

5:36 PM  
Blogger Lee said...

There is no need to retire if the desire to do so is not there, Rel. If you enjoy your work, the people and that wonderful pay-check...keep doing it, my friend! :)

9:30 PM  
Blogger Hope said...

Now that is a sinking feeling!

10:28 PM  
Anonymous gautami tripathy said...

My dad got himself re-employed the day he retired. He was working till the end.

I never thought about retirement giving a sinking feeling. Thanks for this insight. Now I understand what compulsions drove my dad to work even after 70!

1:29 AM  
Blogger Rowan said...

Unless we suddenly acquire sufficient spare cash to employ a full time housekeeper I shan't be retiring either:)

2:58 AM  
Blogger chiefbiscuit said...

I think there has to be some goal to life - working gives us the goal - and we get paid as well - gotta be good. I think our generation is the first generation looking at a non-retirement lifestyle. As a writer, i know i will never retire from writing.(But here's no income from that - i'm not JK Rawlings ...) But I can't see me teaching (or ABM either for that matter). But we may do something else instead ... even if it's part-time work. Great to look ahead and make plans that don't involve sitting ia a rocking chair!

4:49 AM  
Blogger Shelby said...

That is something that gives me a sinking feeling too. Understandable.

9:31 AM  
Blogger ren.kat said...

A humorous post in such a grounded, yet inspiring way!

When I was reading your remark about "earing a living" I wonder though if it shouldn't be a proud thing for America and it's huge corporation to allow men and women to say that they've "earned a living". - I've heard living gets better as you go if you're healthy! - - - If they want to stay home and write and garden etc. full time :-)

2:01 PM  
Anonymous Kat said...

We're all living so much longer nowdays. That's part of the reason I'm giving up my day job now, if things don't work out, I'm still young enough to start a new career.

2:37 PM  
Blogger paris parfait said...

Yes, definitely a sinking feeling. David and I had a big "discussion" last week about how we'll be able to afford a house after we leave Paris - and have any money left over to live! Methinks I will be working until the obit is published, as well. xo

4:31 PM  
Blogger tumblewords said...

This sinking feeling lives with me. It takes me back to early times when there was too much month at the end of the money - I thought that was over, but NO, it's come back.

5:23 PM  
Blogger Kathleen said...

I think about it a lot too. We live a simple life, and that will help, but we're also thinking about new careers...hopefully something we love a lot. I think keeping busy, and doing something you love, is very important.

7:16 PM  
Anonymous Olsum's Diary said...

Yours is a sincere and matter of fact post! Set the reader thinking!
..."you will soon enough find that advancing age and illness have a way of disrupting plans; plans to work "'til the end."...
this really gets me the sinking feeling because it's beyond our control.

5:08 AM  
Blogger Pearl said...

Why not work so long as you enjoy it. Purpose gives health.

8:32 AM  

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