Monday, August 27, 2012

Retirement

 

For years I raced top speed uphill with a full load on my back.  Some days I careened downhill with no brakes or power steering.

And I did it gladly. I liked my job and I relished the responsibility.

Demands and obligations ruled my sleep, my diet, and my personal life.  Alarm clocks, deadlines, and pressure sucked away at my health and my humanity. 

I didn’t need a doctor, a therapist, or a psychiatrist to hand me a diagnosis.  I gained weight.  I suffered anxiety attacks.  I spent the little precious time I’ve been allotted in this world with people who only wanted what I could do for them.

I stopped enjoying my profession. I had given all I could. I wanted something in return for a change.

I worked top speed until the end, honoring my responsibilities.  I held the line until I handed it to my replacement. I looked out for the very people who would not remember who I was after I was gone.  

Then I walked away and refused to look back.

I kept my old life in boxes. My wardrobe hung in the closet.  Every year for the last four, those things become less and less.

One day all that will be gone.
 
           It took me a while to discover where I was headed. For more than half my life I was someone else.  I have had to learn to trust this new me.

2 comments:

  1. When I retired, I gave away everything except for two mid-sized bins thata containted a couple of texts, special books, and binders with exceptional lessons. Although I walked away from teaching, I still haven't found my new retirement self because I'm still giving care.

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  2. I took home two boxes of novels and college textbooks in literature, my gargoyle, my flags, donated my couch to JHS Drama, and absolutely NO public school related paraphernalia.

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