Understanding What’s Important

by Bob Poole on March 19, 2013

Cute Older CoupleWhen last we met here, I told you about my upcoming hip replacement surgery, among other things. I’m happy to report the surgery went amazingly well. I had it done on December 19th and I was home on the 21st. Christmas was spent using a walker to get around but within a few days, I was able to use a cane and it only took a couple of weeks at the most to lose that too. If you had seen me walking down the street on January 15th, you would never believe I just had my right hip removed and a titanium and plastic one inserted.

On December 20th, I was lying in the hospital bed and thinking about the future, getting older (64 in six months) and I realized I have never just taken time to do whatever I wanted to do. I’ve always been driven by my work and a half-dozen other things only a shrink could appreciate. So, I decided to take some time off from everything and do anything. It’s been four months now and I enjoyed it very much. I did come to understand why some people have a difficult time with retirement. There is a routine that is missing and suddenly you’re not sure what it is you should be doing – especially when you’ve told yourself you can do anything you want to do.

My friend Walt in Pittsburgh is retired so I asked him how he dealt with it since I know he was always extremely active and busy. His retirement is forced due to a health problem which, I know, makes it even more difficult for him. He’s the one who first used the term routine with me. He said he thinks it is important to have one. That’s why you see the same older people at the same diner every morning talking and having a great time, or the same people on the walking trail talking, walking, and laughing together.

I think that what I discovered is that what we need most when we make a major change like retirement is knowing there are friends who look forward to seeing you – friends you can count on for a laugh, a hug, and a smile.

I’m back here for a while. I don’t know how long as I’m still in “do anything I want to do” mode. And, one of things I want to do right now is to put some words on digital paper and leave them here. I definitely have some stuff that I’ve thought about during this time off that I plan on writing about.

It’s good to be back.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

becky blanton March 19, 2013 at 1:19 pm

Welcome back Bob! I always say, “If you love what you do, you’ll never work another day in your life.” I think being in “do anything” mode is a great place to be. I’m not sure I’ve ever left it, although I modify it from time-to-time to pay bills. I think Walt is a wise man. Routine, even if it has nothing to do with the clock, is a grand thing. As someone who loves you wherever you are, whatever you’re doing, I say, “Good for you my friend! Glad you’re back, hale and hearty!” May you have another 64 years just as wonderful!
becky blanton recently posted..The Problem with ExpectationsMy Profile

Bob Poole March 19, 2013 at 3:46 pm

Thank you, Becky, for the kind words. You are a wonderful friend and my life is richer because of it.

Walt is a very wise man and has taught me many lessons. I only wish we weren’t separated by 5.5 hours drive time. Being with him for a couple of hours is like refilling your laugh tank. You laugh until your sides ache!
Bob Poole recently posted..Hip, Hip, Horray!My Profile

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