NOW THAT YOU MENTION IT – Marilyn Armstrong

Maybe getting old isn’t all that bad, now that you mention it.

There was a question on my local Facebook page asking for suggestions about local pediatricians. I suddenly realized I don’t actually know any pediatricians. Not a single one. I don’t know where to buy Pampers and I haven’t had to get up at dawn to make sure I get the kid on the bus in the middle of January when it’s 10 below zero. No more making dawn sandwiches or buying pounds of bologna, cheese, and sandwich bags.

My son is 49 and my granddaughter is 21, so I guess it shouldn’t be a big surprise, but it was. Because I don’t exactly remember when I slipped free of worrying about kid stuff. As long as Kaity was a child, it remained part of my world.

Now … it’s finished. Whatever worrying I do, it’s about my adult son and grownup granddaughter.

I’m not worried about the routes for school buses or looking for a great playground. Or wondering how many pairs of shoes the child will need this year. I am not wrapped in the world of children anymore.

Do I miss it?

Are you kidding?

I won’t be packing lunch or overseeing homework assignments. I will not have to listen to the kid lying about how he or she did the homework during study hall, trying to decide whether or not to call him or her on it, or just say “screw it” and move on.

The only bus in town

What is more, I don’t need to update my résumé. I won’t be commuting to a distant office or planning a vacation based around a two-week vacation. Given our finances, I might not get any vacation, but I don’t really need a long vacation, though I wouldn’t mind one should one wander this way.

I will probably only set my alarm a dozen times during the coming year and that will be a dozen times too many.

There are worse things than being old and I think going to work is one of them.

Retirement. Way to go!

Author: Marilyn Armstrong

Writer, photography, blogger. Previously, technical writer. I am retired and delighted to be so. May I live long and write frequently.

28 thoughts on “NOW THAT YOU MENTION IT – Marilyn Armstrong”

  1. My grandson arrived last year and is now at the stage where with lots of effort he can stand. I naturally follow every step of his development, he is the future. As you say we now have it all behind us and I don’t mind. I do mind about the stuff in front of me. Some things have ambushed me in the senior years. It was only 4 years ago that I would go for walks with my camera and now I have to do it from the wheelchair because I otherwise lose my balance

    Liked by 1 person

    1. A couple of years ago I could walk up the steps and drive around finding pictures. But you know? We ARE alive. An awful lot of old friends are gone and quite a few more are on their way. I’m glad to have this part of my life and while I love my granddaughter, I’m glad I’m not wrapped in babies right now. It’s nice to have a grown up granddaughter too 🙂

      Liked by 4 people

    1. Just being able to sleep late is such a big deal. Stay up till you feel like going to bed, then sleep till you are ready to get up — or the dog starts trying to break down the door. Mostly, the latter. Or the phone rings 🙂

      Liked by 3 people

  2. I never had any children so I didn’t have to go thru raising kids, but not by choice – pregnancy just never happened, even after going thru all the tests and early morning temp readings. But I’m counting the days when that glorious day comes that I can put the hammer to my alarm clock – 8 more years! And if those years go by as quickly as this year has gone so far, I’ll be a very happy camper when I’m finally at the RV lot picking out my new home on wheels. 😁

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  3. Waiting for the bus when it’s 10 below….. I remember those days (As a kid, obviously). These days, school gets shut down if it even dips below zero because we don’t want the kids to harden up…. er, I mean freeze.

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    1. Those early bus rides were killers. It was SO cold, I used to turn on the car so we could keep from turning solid while we waited. They do NOT close the school here unless it gets so cold the heating units can’t keep the school warm enough. It’s New England. It gets cold. But no problem. We have so much snow, that closes the schools down as much as 2 weeks a year, then they have to make up the days at the end when NO one wants to be there, including teachers.

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  4. I hear that. Old may give us musical joints and funny little hacky noises when we wake up, but I so do not miss being that much younger. I don’t miss growing up, which, when I look back on it was a nightmare–I don’t miss all the machinations that went on around me and behind my back, I don’t miss having to get up at 4 AM every damn work day to get the wood stove going, and get my husband off to work.
    I LOVE his early retirement, and we’ve never regretted a minute of it.

    I also don’t miss the kids I never had, because the mother I had would have ‘owned’ them by the time they could walk.

    The irony is, after being a nightperson for most of my life, I now wake up with the sun, which sounds wonderful until you look at the clock this time of year and think, holy crap it’s not even 5 yet…we work hard, but it’s for us, not for anyone else. Our ‘salary’ is counted in ticks removed, wood split, moved and stacked, lawns done. Our terms.

    We are, like you, at the far end of the journey, but at this point if we haven’t come to terms with that, at least, we proably never will.

    And yeah, that’s a great swing.

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    1. I wanted that swing since I was a kid and the irony is that I don’t use it much. Recently, because of the nightmare of the Gypsy Moths, but more often, because I can’t make it up and down the stairs these days. And I need to clean out the thousands of spiders that have moved in 🙂 But I don’t regret retirement. I only regret the poverty that came with it.

      i’ve gone the other way. I spent my life getting up early and earlier and now, I get up when I need to or feel like it. That may be the best part of retiring.

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  5. Brings back a lot of memories! Good ones! You haven’t changed much since Kaitlin was little. You STILL want to buy her things and spoil her rotten, as you do STILL! You’d still go out of your way to do thing with her. You just do different things. Picture taking, etc. You’re home is always still open to her and both you AND Garry are still her world. So, in reality, not a LOT has changed, (of course, she doesn’t wear diapers anymore) thank goodness lol. She and I love you both totally and always!

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    1. AND we don’t both have to get up and stand outside in the freezing weather hoping the bus will get there 😀 Those morning’s were so terribly cold! I’m still shivering. The love doesn’t change — but the activities do. If I never make another bologna sandwich again, that will be JUST FINE 🙂 Hugs to all and happy Memorial Weekend! If you feel like it, pop by. We are home. It’s the end of the month so we don’t have any money to be anywhere else!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Oh that sweet swing – I would love to own one just like it!
    And all the rest – yes…. yes…. yes. Although, to be honest, I am ‘officially’ retired but don’t collect my tiny, tiny annuity (just) yet, as Hero Husband is wahayyyy younger and I simply cannot ‘afford’ to think as a pensioner. There is still SO much to do, to be able to do it and not to play around. But what I do allow myself is Reading in bed, often, half mornings go by because I get so engrossed in my lecture that I don’t even want to check the time. It feels GREAT 🙂

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  7. Absolutely!! I said to myself this morning, I can’t believe I ever went to work. What a way to live! And one of my greatest joys is not waking up on Sunday morning and having to make lunches!

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  8. My poor husband sets his alarm at 3:45 AM to get a 5 AM bus some days. I stay in another rooms those days so I can still sleep in a lazy fashion! I never had kids and am fine with that too.

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      1. I can understand that. I have close friends who are old-fashioned multiple personalities folks, genuinely, and sometimes their ‘littles’ can be quite the handful to deal with in person, especially if they decide to come out in public. Mainstream babysitting is nothing compared to it!

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  9. I never had children but I imagine that it must be great not to have to worry about that stuff after so long. Although listening to the mothers that I meet at the Op Shop it seems that even adult children can be pretty stressful at times. I’m 6 years off being officially retired but as it’s unlikely that anyone will employ me now I am starting to feel semi retired. I woke up this morning happy in the knowledge that there is nothing that I have to do this weekend, nowhere I have to go and nobody I have to see. I can read, play dolls, write, take pictures and cook if I wish, or heat up a pizza if I don’t. If that’s retirement I like it.

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    1. Sometimes, the adults are the worst. When they have a problem, it’s a big huge grownup problem inevitably involving money and assistance that at one time, we could manage — but now, we are retired with health sliding away. We really can’t. I think my kids (son, granddaughter) are finally realizing we really ARE retired — we don’t have extra money. It’s not that we don’t care. We just can’. It has taken a long time for me to put my foot down, too and say “NO, we really don’t have the money.” I should have done it yeas ago.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes that seems to be the problem for many parents. Grown up kids who assume the “bank of mum and dad” is permanently open and that because it’s family there is no rush to pay it back or who assume that you can baby sit at the drop of a hat and will never say no.

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