On the entertainment front, I watched a movie on Amazon Prime called, “Edie.” It’s about an 83-year-old woman in England who feels she wasted her life and now wants to climb a mountain in Scotland. It made me wonder about the definition of a wasted life.
Unlike Edie, I’ve gone after almost everything I wanted in life. However, in the grand scheme of things, I haven’t accomplished much. I consider making enough money to retire my greatest achievement. And here I am approaching 65, piddling around and relishing in simple pleasures.
I guess you could say the slacker retirement model works for me … at least for now. I am the happiest I’ve been. I don’t miss my career. I enjoy how I spend my time on the planet. Of course, the go-go model is another option, but I see that as just another race, only the rats are different.
But never say never. I suspect we experience different phases throughout retirement. Three years in, I might still be in my nesting phase, but something might switch over, and I’ll wake up wanting to climb that mountain. If we’re lucky, we get to make choices along the way.
I asked Dale what he thought, and his response was so profound I immediately ran to get a piece of paper and pen to write it down, but by the time I returned, we could barely reconstruct what he said. It was something like this:
If you can do what makes you happy and help people along the way, then that is a life well-lived.
Pretty good, yes?
Donna Pekar is an aging badass (for real) who lives in California and writes Retirement Confidential.