Tuesday, August 23, 2022

Moving & Retirement Anxiety

This time last week, the movers were done unloading us at our new place in Cheyenne. I was making our beds, exhausted and on my last ounce of strength. The thought of climbing between the sheets was all that kept me going.

Since then, we have unpacked most of the kitchen and our bed and bath stuff, though much is still in boxes in the garage. We're slowly pulling out what is needed and relegating the rest to longer-term storage - down in the partially-finished basement. Soon we will need to tuck our cars in from the weather. But for now, the skies are clear, and the temps are fabulous, topping out at around 80F, with lows in the 50s. I'm grateful to have escaped the extreme heat that continues to plague the Nampa/Boise area, and I pray relief comes to them soon.

On Saturday, feeling the need for brighter and more color in my life, I ventured to the nearby TJ Maxx, arriving as they opened. Though intent on finding orange bathroom towels, I detoured down a clothes aisle and scored! Six new colorful and desperately needed tops came home with me. Plus the towels I mentioned and a few other things. Now today, I've settled on a fabulous (and even more colorful) shower curtain courtesy of Amazon.

My New Shower Curtain

I also left a message for Dr. Dierenfield's Cheyenne office. He's the one Activator chiropractor showing on their website, and I'm in dire need of an adjustment. Plus, who knows, he might be in the market for a part-time chiropractor.

Because the thing is - it feels weird not "having a job." And stranger still not knowing there's a paycheck coming in every other week. I could live on my Social Security check - if I had to. But I'd rather not. And I don't want to deplete my limited savings. Especially with the way prices are skyrocketing.

And that brings me to the main reason for this post.

There's this fluttery, nervy feeling I keep getting in my gut,  a mini/micro freakout. I'm sure you've experienced something similar. Like when an airplane hits an air pocket and for those few moments there's no support beneath you. It could also be described as... a big gulp, butterflies, a sense of foreboding or impending doom, waiting for the other shoe to drop, or the shit's about to hit the fan. (Click the gif below to hear Lucy.)

For those who have taken the "retirement" leap with or without a safety net, is this normal? Please tell me it is. I felt it a few times before leaving Idaho and assumed it was related to the immensity of the move. But we arrived at our new place on Saturday (the 13th), and our stuff showed up last Monday. Then as the week ticked by, I began feeling it again throughout the day. Over the weekend, it eased. Now it's Monday again, and the gut-grab is back in full force.

What the hay?

Curious, I googled "is it normal to get moments of panic after retiring?", and found a website called Sixty & Me. This article says YES. It's a real thing. So does Forbes.

From the Forbes website:

Retirement planning expert Sally Hurme, JD, says, “it can be kind of scary shifting from earning a regular paycheck to living off of your hard-earned savings month after month.”  ...You suddenly need to arrange your own cash flow instead of having it provided by your employer. Can you blame a person for feeling some panic? 

So, yes, retirement anxiety, and even panic, is a real thing—one I am bumping up against. I guess the real challenge is to not freak out to the point that I jump back into chiropractic rather than putting myself on a writing schedule. If I stay the course, finish and publish Awen Tide, then advertise the heck out of the trilogy, hopefully, I'll have money streaming in rather than gushing out.

Can I do it? We shall see. Wish me luck!

Until next time,

That Rebel, Olivia J. Herrell, writing as O. J. Barré

P.S. I could not keep the appointment with the neurosurgeon on the 11th. There was too much to do on that last critical day of the move. But I AM hoping to get a Zoom visit with Dr. Martinez to discuss what I should do about the benign mediastinal tumor.

P.P.S. As it turns out, Dr. Martinez does not make telehealth appointments, so it's time to punt. That means I will investigate my options here in Wyoming over the coming months.

O. J. Barré is the author of the Awen Trilogy, a fun, fast, and epic urban fantasy set in 2042 Atlanta. Steeped in current, ancient, and future history twists, Book One, Awen Rising, debuted July 2019. Book Two, Awen Storm, released May 2020. Book Three, Awen Tide, is on preorder and will release in 2022. All are (or will be) available in both paperback and ebook, and the hardback versions will be available in 2022.

Free For Subscribers

O. J.'s Awen Prequel novelette, The Druids of Marduk, Part I, is also available as an ebook - for purchase on Amazon (or free by signing up for her newsletter). The second installment, The Druids of Marduk, Part II: UnderEarth, is an ebook novella also available on Amazon. Part III: AboveEarth, is scheduled for a 2022 release.

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