giving thanks #16

My thankfulness continues into the new year.

Yesterday I wrote about my gratitude for my career as a teacher, and for being “called” into that service and using God’s gifts to do that job well for 34 years. There were times when I was “burned out,” as well as other times I was greatly disheartened, but I continued to hear God telling me, “I have called you to be a teacher. When I have something else in mind I will let you know.”

A few years ago I knew it was getting to be time to retire. I know God was letting me know it was time. I was able to work that last year with no one outside my family knowing it was my last, except for two dear secret-keeping friends and my principal. I was encouraged that so many said to me they had no idea I was retiring until we announced it about three weeks before year end. I hope that meant I didn’t slow down in my work or act as if I didn’t care about the future of the students and the school. Because I did care – I still do. But my retirement has been absolutely wonderful!  I am busy with keeping my grandchild one day a week, participating in a soul-strengthening weekly Bible study, chairing our local nonprofit library foundation, trying to be a better friend and attend to others’ needs more than before, and revisiting art and design skillsets I had abandoned for lack of time and energy when I worked full time. Even though I still find there is never enough time, Time has a different meaning to me these days, resulting in a better attitude and considerably less stress.

When I was finishing my last year, a friend asked, “How do you know it is time to retire?” I told her that if she didn’t know the answer to that, then it wasn’t time for her to retire. I have never looked back. I am immensely grateful for each new day in this new stage of life.

I am so thankful.

6 thoughts on “giving thanks #16

  1. showgem says:

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts about retirement. I am a second career teacher so I have a ways to go to rack up as many years as you have. Great advice about knowing when to retire. If your not sure it’s time. Enjoy your time.

  2. kristalee11 says:

    Oh my. Your slice speaks to me today.
    For this first time in my career, when someone asked about retirement, I did the math in my head. (I’m eligible in 2 years.)
    Now I find myself thinking – how can I make the greatest contribution in the next 2 years?
    Hmmm….points to ponder….

  3. Donna Smith says:

    I know exactly what you mean about knowing when it is time to retire. It’s just something that happens when it is time – you just know.

  4. Yes, I believe that people know when it is time to retire but the difficulty comes from not being truly able to follow that notion financially. And that goes for other careers and occupations besides teaching. I am glad you have been able to and are enjoying your retirement!

  5. jhaworthoy says:

    You are so right about knowing when it is time. I have been retired for six years and have not looked back wishing to be back as a guidance counselor. We find our own paths and move into them easily if we don’t try to second guess.

  6. Linda Baie says:

    This is my first year of retirement and I knew too. It was time. I am still working with one teacher, and doing lots of other things, but am so happy in this new kind of life. Best wishes for you continuing to do all those things you shared. They sound very good!

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