In celebration of retirement (2)

You have to grow them before you can smell them.

The best time to start thinking about your retirement is before the boss does.

– Unknown, Source

For most of us retirement, like death which sooner or later follows, is viewed with a blend of apprehension and resignation. To be dreaded is a protracted painful illness, culminating in an agonizing demise. Just as daunting is to become increasingly dependent on others as a result of a relentless incapacity. The thought of oblivion is another horror. We can’t quite conceive what that will be like. It is a journey into the unknown, from which we do not return. Without the spark of life, we turn to the dust.

Retirement in the thinking of many, is like an atrium to the funeral parlour. A quote, attributed to Pablo Casals, is  “To retire is to die”. Ernest Hemingway wasn’t any more cheerful in saying that “Retirement is the ugliest word in the language”.

Retirement is not a penalty, nor just a waiting room for the inevitable. For those retiring at 65, it is a significant bloc of our life. The average nowadays is about two decades, sufficient for a new direction, without the constraints of meeting the expectations of others. It is an opportunity for new experiences and activities. We now have more time for family and friends; the most important consideration in life.

As important as it may be, religious perspectives are side-stepped to focus on the more mundane considerations of preparation for, and participation in, the retirement experience. It is an effort in short to “Celebrate Retirement”.

Categories: In celebration of retirement


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