I haven’t written much for a while, and I miss it. I stop myself and I don’t really know why. Some may be the self questioning of my words and what I may have to say…..some may be that it can be hard to write from a dark place (where I feel that I have been for a while now). So I distract myself….with tv, with food, with games on my phone (a friend introduced me to Words with Friends and I have become somewhat addicted…) I continue to navigate retirement (I cannot believe that his has been a year since I retired!) People ask how I like retirement….what I have been doing. Oh, the eternal pressure (within) to somehow validate my existence and prove my worth by doing….
The pandemic has allowed more quiet time (which is not uncomfortable or unfamiliar to me) and less expectations of being the happy, traveling, fun filled retiree…..
I am grateful to be retired. It was time to leave that job. I gave enough…..having been a social worker as my career. I do not regret it for a moment, but I am done with that.
So, who am I now? I like to write – and hope that this becomes more a part of my life as I continue on this path. Because I have things inside that I need to express. I like to paint, and recently started a new painting and am grateful to have begun that. I was taking voice lessons for fun, but stopped that for a while dealing with a sick kitty and many visits to the vet. We still don’t know exactly what is going on with her, but I also realize that I need to keep living my life. So I will start singing again.
That perhaps this is yet another lesson of aging – to keep living one’s life even with all the challenges and setbacks …..including age related changes in ourselves. I go to the gym, but now my goal is to keep flexible and functional as long as I can ….very different than the goal of my younger days to look fit and attractive. It’s not that I don’t still wish for that in some ways, but I am more realistic and hopefully wiser these days. At least I like to think that I am. My hearing is not what it used to be. I will need to deal with this. It’s so interesting to remember saying at times that I was tired of listening to people all the time. Be careful what we say to ourselves…. I find myself not wanting to drive at night as much, as it is a bit more difficult for me to see then. How much do we push ourselves to keep doing things and how much do we adjust and find new ways to keep going……I don’t know the answer to that, but will keep working on that with each new issue.
And yet, there is still much life and passion within me. I want to honor that, even if it is expressed differently than before. I am still here. I am still alive. And I have the “me” from all the ages that I have been still deep inside me. They don’t go away, they simply make room for each new facet as the years continue to go by. The team meetings within grow larger with more members each year.
We , each of us, have so many stories within us. I want to hear the life stories of others on the path with me. I want to keep sharing my own story. And so here I am, with gratitude, writing. – even if lost and not knowing where I am going – but still writing and expressing and feeling and living. I am still here – I am still alive.
9 thoughts on “Still lost…..still alive…..still breathing….”
Please do keep sharing your story, Josaia! And please don’t let others’ expectations make you doubt what you choose to do. This sentence really resonated with me: “Oh, the eternal pressure (within) to somehow validate my existence and prove my worth by doing….” I’ve often felt the same way, and often still feel the same way, since I’ve retired. I’m keeping myself busy with writing, writing classes, reading, photography, etc., but I try to remind myself that one of the reasons why I retired was to slow down and enjoy life in the moment more. I get caught up in my efforts to be “productive,” losing sight of the fact that I’m defining productivity the same way I did when I was working. Old habits and thought processes are hard to break 😉
I feel all the changes that you’re going through. I’m more focused on being flexible and functional, as you say, since my knees really have the final say in what I can and can’t do 😉 We are growing older, our bodies are changing, but we can adjust. It’s not easy … someone told me that growing old is not for cowards … but if we want to live a full life, we do what we can to make it possible. I do hope things improve with Squeaky (that’s her name, right?).
Thank you so very much, Marie, for your heartfelt comment and encouragement!
Yes, we do what we can to live the fullest life possible. That’s my intention…. Even in the dark places. I encourage and support you as well as we walk this path.
Thank you for your wishes for Squeaky’s. I’m sure that I’ll be writing about this as we go along. She has a strong spirit and will to live. She teaches
me to keep going…. Even when things happen to change our bodies and overall functioning. We go on….we do our best, we thrive as much as we can…and we go on…..
I’m glad we are on this path at the same time in our lives. Kindred spirits help us not feel so alone, yes?
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Yes, indeedy, and I’m glad to hear about Squeaky 🙂
Very interesting and deep read Jo! I think to some degree we can all as human beings relate to that. It goes into the thing of wanting to feel a sense of purpose and having meaning in our lives. Monotony can kill ones passion for life as it can leave one feeling like they have no options thus no sense of purpose & meaning. Monotony of the job(s), ones choice of extracurricular activities, the stage of retirement, etc., all can have the same dead end destination in the end.
One of the most insightful things I’ve heard said is that we always have to see what our options are. I’d add that we also need to consider what our possibilities our in that sense and how to maximize on that if we want to. Feeling trapped is what drives a lot of the frustrations.
That’s something that’s been resonating with me even more so during this pandemic.
In any event, very good read and keep at it Jo! Stay engaging your passions. Two of the biggest tragedies in life are to not utilize ones talents/gifts and to not embrace your passions. Keep at it & do your thing.
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*what our possibilities are…
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Thanks, Vincenzo, for your thoughtful comments and encouragement!
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I enjoyed reading your post. We are preparing to retire in the next few years.
Wishing you a wonderful retirement. It will be a journey, with ups and downs…..as is life, yes? I really feel it is such a wonderful time where we get to come home to ourselves and who we really are….I find that patience and self compassion help the travels……wishing you wonderful times to come!