I've lived the vast majority of my life just kind of going with the flow. I worked where I got jobs and if I like it I stayed. If I didn't like it, I left and found another. I had no real 'career' for the early part of my adulthood. I lived where I could afford it and quite honestly did not really plan for the future. I jokingly say that being raised during the cold war caused me to believe I wouldn't live to see retirement, but that's honestly not so much a joke. Also, while my parents did the best they could, they were not a role model for saving and retirement. They barely got by. My dad worked two jobs sometimes. Yeah, they did not model the life that included savings and retirement. My dad died when he was 52. My mom went to work after that and worked for years until she eventually retired. I don't know how old she was when she retired but I know that she survived solely on social security. Not sure I could do that now. I know Hubby gets about $2200 every month and I would get something similar but is that really enough? We bring home over $5000 from work and then his SS on top of that, so about $7200 a month. Cutting it down to about $5000 would be difficult. In any case, now that I am nearing the age of retirement, I'm thinking about it. I don't want to work forever. I want to be able to enjoy my final years doing things I want to do and not be tied to a job.
Having said all that, I still have student loans that I need to take care of before I retire. I will not retire with that hanging over my head. I am currently, 51 payments into it with 69 left to go. I have 17 months I can submit forms for, so that will put me at 68 payments and 52 left to go. That amounts to a little over 4 years of payments. I can do that. I am currently 63 years old. I am looking to retire when I'm 70 because the benefits kick up a lot at that age. So my student loans will be paid off when I'm around 68 and then I work for two more years and retire. That works for me. Then between my retirement, social security, Hubby's social security and his nominal retirement, we should be fine.
BUT, and that is a big but. We won't be rolling in dough and I want something to keep my busy. I had thought of subbing, but yeah, nah. Once I'm done, I'm done. While I greatly enjoy teaching, I don't want to do it as a part time gig. The best part of teaching is the relationships and I just don't think that would happen as much in a part time setting. So that's out. That's why I started my little craft business. I hope to grow that over time and have it so it keeps me busy when I retire. I don't want to make a ton of money. I don't want it to become a full time job. I want to do it because I enjoy it and hopefully I will make some spending money on the side.
Having laid all the above out, now I need to really consider what I want my life to look like. What do I want to do. How to I want to live. What will my life look like? Let's fantasize a bit......
I want to:
- Wake when I want to and not when I have to
- Time to go to the gym
- Time to walk Mavy whenever I want
- Freedom to work or not work on any given day
- Enough money to survive and maybe travel once in a while
- To be healthy enough to do all of the above
- To be strong mentally and physically
- To have the energy to hike and bike and travel
- To live life on my terms and not someone else's
- Perfect my craft skills on the things I want to sell
- Figure out all the little details of my craft business
- Eat to support my health and not my emotions
- Move my body as much as possible
- Lift heavy things occasionally
- Not let my emotions get involved in anything