Backing Into Social Security

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Yesterday, we visited the local Social Security office. It is hard to imagine, though I have been imagining it now in recent years, that I will turn 66 in less than two months.

Retirement age. Gold watch phase. Couch-sitting page.

Hard to believe it’s all coming to an end.

I’ve been in the full-time workforce for over 40 years. Had ups and downs, made career mistakes, made some excellent choices. “Regrets, I’ve had a few” (thanks Frank), but not “too few to mention” (though I won’t just now), and I haven’t always done it My Way or even a good way.  I’ve struggled with myself, missed opportunities, wasted time – heck, just put in time, doubted myself. Had fun, learned tons, made some contributions here and there. I’ve survived downsizing, resizing, and exorcizing. I’ve worked with a few folks who I would not have minded missing, but overall had great pleasure in knowing, learning from, and laughing with all sorts of people. People who have enriched my life.

Hard to believe it’s all coming to an end.

“But wait!” As my friend Stanley would often say.  “There’s more!”

This month’s AARP magazine cover story is about Willie Nelson, a life well lived. He’s 85 and still touring.  And you know, it’s not hard to find stories of people who followed their vocations for years and years after “retirement age”.

I’m not ready to retire.

There’s more. More to be done. More work life to enjoy.

I’m not ready to retire, say I again, though I could. Not gonna do it. Not yet.  Will stick around – God willing – at least until I hit 70, maybe longer.  One good reason for waiting to take Social Security benefits is that if I wait until then, they’ll increase (up to age 70). Nice.

But the other is that I LOVE my work. Love going to work. Love seeing my work family as well as my home family. Love being pushed a little to learn more, do more, try more.

I’ve found a new sense of purpose, new energy.  Profound Living and Learning. Researching it. Writing about it.   Developing and facilitating workshops about it. That should keep me interested, doing something of value, for a few more years.

We visited the Social Security office yesterday, and were helped by this wonderful woman named Alma. She answered our questions, was so friendly, made us smile and laugh, and we left feeling just a little more confident that we were making good decisions about the future.

I’m backing into Social Security, not ready to retire yet, not ready. But feeling so good that it will be there when I’m ready to turn around and wrap my arms around it. When I’m ready.  Not when society says, “You’re done.”

I’m backing into Social Security, and stepping forward in faith and anticipation.


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3 thoughts on “Backing Into Social Security

  1. Reading the title and first few lines caused some concern — you’re not the only one who’s not ready for you to retire. We’re having too much fun! Excellent post with a great message. Thank you.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Once I decided to retire, I ran full speed ahead out the office door! Glad you are enjoying your work enough to want to stick to it until your “salary” will be better.

    Liked by 2 people

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