This is the latest in an occasional series of blog posts commenting on upcoming retirement.
You might not think this is a big deal, but it is to me.
The words “I am retired” are flowing more easily out of my pie hole these days.
I get asked frequently by customers at the auto dealership where I work: “Do you do this full time, part time or what? Are you retired?”
My answer: “Oh I’m retired now.”
Actually, my presence at the auto dealership reveals that I am not yet fully retired. I’m getting there, slowly but inexorably.
I’ll admit to being a bit uncomfortable saying “I am retired” when I first started collecting my Social Security income. My discomfort wasn’t anything that I can identify. I didn’t have pangs in my gut. I didn’t stutter when I said it. I didn’t flinch, wince or grimace at the sound of the words.
It was just a strange set of words coming from me, of all people, a guy who had worked pretty damn hard for nearly 40 years in daily journalism. Then it ended. I was sent out to pasture, along with a number of other, um, more mature fellow practitioners of this noble craft.
I have admitted already that I wasn’t ready for the day I tendered my resignation after being told someone else would be doing the job I had been doing at my last newspaper stop here in Amarillo. Instead of seeking another job at the Globe-News, I decided to quit.
Boom, just like that, my career was over.
The onset of retirement is sounding more comfortable to me these days. I’ve still got a couple of part-time jobs that keep me busy. There’s the Street Toyota auto dealership customer service gig; there’s also my freelance writing gig at KFDA NewsChannel 10.
However, I am feeling more retired these days than not.
What’s more, I am quite comfortable saying it out loud.
Ain’t it cool?