Wednesday, March 02, 2011

A New Chapter in my Life!

It's not a book yet, but it could be!  I'm setting out on a new chapter in my life.....the one that begins when you retire from your full time office job and start another life style.  I've looked forward to this for some time now, as do many of us.  But it was expedited by the twists and turns that life throws at us. 

First of all, my retirement date was planned for the end of March.....making April 1st or April Fools Day the first day of my retired life.  An auspicious date for such a monumental change don't you think?  So, as always, with "the best laid plans of mice and men" .....things didn't work out that way.  During my Christmas vacation, I fell and broke my foot.  That put me in an air cast, with instructions to keep my foot elevated for a period of time.  But, beyond that, I was unable to drive our standard vehicle, so had to take extra time off work.  Rather than have the office go through training someone for my absence with the broken foot, and then again six weeks later for my permanent replacement, I decided to expedite my retirement date. 

So, I guess if you want to get technical, I retired at Christmas break because I've been away from work since that time!  My last official day on payroll was January 28th, and my first official day of retirement turned out to be February 1st. 

But nothing is ever that clear and concise.  I was sitting here in my chair on the morning of January 30th when the phone rang.  It was my Mum, and she was upset.  My Dad had fallen, broken his hip and was in the hospital.  She asked "Can you come?  I can't handle this alone."  I said I would be there as soon as I could.  I was on a plane within two and a half hours, with the help of my friend who drove me there.  She was great as we put things into her vehicle.  She asked "Do you have your other shoe?  If you're there long you may want it."  So I dashed back inside to get the other shoe that matched the one I had on my "good foot".  Turned out to be a good thing because not only did my stay stretch to three weeks, but the ice and snow was treacherous with an air cast, so as soon as I thought it feasible, I took the boot off and wore my runners, with my Mum's "cleats" attached.  Great invention that one! 

So, my Dad waited 2 1/2 days for surgery, but has pulled through miraculously considering he is 96.  There were some long worrisome days, but Mum and Dad have yet again surmounted the obstacles thrown in their path and Dad is gaining strength and Mum is able to help him. there was a week in the hospital, a week in the rehabilitation center, and then a week at home.  I stayed until I was sure they could handle the shower, cooking, the trips to the lab for blood tests etc.  I didn't really want to leave when I did, but I had things at home that needed to be attended to as well!  One being the pets I had deserted in my rush to get there.  People were looking after them and I totally appreciated that, but you can only let people help you for so long! 

One of the things I did to help out was to walk their adorable and extremely well trained little dog three times a day.  I couldn't help but notice the houses in the neighborhood.  I like unusual buildings and this district was amazing....everything from the heritage home to the ultra-modern....side-by-side making a very eclectic neighborhood.  It was a pleasure to walk around and see these places. 

So now I'm home, adjusting to retired life, checking on my parents every second day by telephone, and planning to go back for a short check-in on spring break.  I'll be taking two granddaughters to see their Dad at that time and will tie in a visit with Mum and Dad.  In walking around in my back yard yesterday, I discovered a surprise....crocuses blooming all over the lawn in our back yard.  A harbinger of spring that was very welcome after walking a little dog dressed in boots and sweater in -37 degree windchills! 


Angela said...

the picture of Mum and Dad holding hands is just so cute....
Love the little houses in a row!
I can see a quilt coming out of that one!

Cara Larose said...

Retirement life is as fun as you would expect. It is the time when you could think clearer about life and how you are going to spend it wisely. It is also the time when you get to be with your closest loved ones and have the best time with each other. And lastly, it's the time when you get to take good care of YOURSELF. See how fun it is? =] Happy retirement!