So, the facts
I’m a 50-something, soon-to-be-retired scientist who has worked in a natural resource field for over 30 years. I am a Wyomingite, having lived in this state since 1995. I’ve been married to the same guy for nearly 35 years, and we’ve raised 3 kids to adulthood. We have a small house on 6 acres located 7 miles from the nearest town. No trees, but lots of pronghorn. There are two rescue dogs in the house: an old, staid White German Shephard and a young, impulsive Kelpie mix. They drive each other crazy but are inseparable.
What the blog is about
I’ve started this blog to chronicle transition into a new phase of life — my lane change, if you will. From parent to empty-nester. Career professional to retiree. Yet, the transition is more than just changes in life roles. It is a passage to a life that is wanted rather than the life that was expected. Are we ever too old to do what we were intended to do?
I intend to find out.
I don’t know what that the next phase entails, but I know that it involves exploring physical ventures, such as bike touring, swimming, and running. Cliché? Perhaps. Every retiree wants to prove themselves, right? But I want to see where this goes and discover if there is a second career in this for me. Can an older woman jumpstart a career in some type of fitness realm? And exactly what might that look like?
The next steps
First step: get me into better physical and mental shape.
My job has kept me stressed/sedentary part of the year and stressed/physically expended the rest of the time. This needs more balance. My plan is to work to improve my strength and endurance so that I’m better prepared for a more physical lifestyle. I need to prove some things to myself and see if I’m really willing to work on my endurance goals. I was a competitive swimmer in my college days, and I want to try to compete again. Not just swim but swim really well. Then we have a bike tour planned for this summer, and I want to improve my speed and stamina. We’ve done this ride in the past and I was always a laggard. I want to do better. And, god help me, I might just have to run at some point during this COVID-19 pandemic because the gyms and pools are all closed. Bad time to reignite fitness training.
Second step: work through some complicated feelings that I have about the end of my career.
I am burned out, and I know that I need to leave my job for both professional and health reasons. I haven’t felt productive or capable for a long time. The struggle is both internal and external — the lack of adequate resources at work has left me feeling unworthy. I sense that I will be forever damaged if I try to continue in this position and in this field. Maybe I am already damaged. I do not exaggerate when I say that this job might do me in.
Third step: let’s see about getting past the first two steps, shall we?