Today, I’m marking ten years since I retired from the company I worked for for 25 years. If memory serves, my official job title at the time I left was HRMS Team Lead. Or HR Business Analyst. Or something to that effect. All I know for certain (thanks to Facebook memories) is that ten years ago today I attended a celebratory retirement lunch somewhere with my co-workers. Most of the details of that lunch are lost to me save for a story told about the time some of us Canadians discovered that the word “snot” was plural in Russian (Don’t ask. And apologies if I’m not being PC. Your really had to be there.)
Anyway, I’ve been retired for ten years and this morning, Gerry and I reminisced about that move from Washington state back to Kamloops, B.C. It was a stressful, retiring and repatriating back to Canada at the same time. But I was, and am, so grateful for the gift of being able to retire at age 55.
It wasn’t long after that things took a turn in our daughter’s life and we were blessed to be back in Canada and near enough to be able to help her and our granddaughter as much as we could.
My working years were good ones; I was blessed with a career I loved, but that I wasn’t sorry to walk away from when the time was right. Our life in Washington seems like a distant dream. The years since then have passed a flash and life took turns I couldn’t have imagined when I was enjoying that retirement lunch.
Now we live here in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, my heart’s true home. This morning, as I was driving home from running errands downtown, I was caught by surprise and delight to see the Snowbirds fly in formation overhead (they make their home at the 15-Wing Canadian Airforce Base just outside of the city. My heart was already full just from stopping to drop off a book at the library and do some business at the bank. Every time I go downtown I can’t help but be overcome by childhood memories and filled with contentment and gratitude that I get to live here again.
Later, I joined Gerry at the Yara Center for a yoga class (he’s been going to fitness classes there for the past year, I’ve just started joining him). We came home for lunch and played a game of chess and he went back for another class. I sat down to read and tap out this blog post. I’m not stressing about supper because a delivery from Chef’s Plate came while we were out so the options are many—or, we may have pancakes since it’s Shrove Tuesday after all.
We both have our health; our kids are doing well; and life is good ten years into retirement. I’m grateful for every day.