- Name: Brian A.
- Location: Modesto, California
- Age: 73
- Retired At: 66
- Marital Status: Widowed
- Profession: Retired business coordinator for a non-profit.
Brian’s career has led him down many paths. He was in the U.S. Navy for 12 years, a pastor for another 12 years, and in the non-profit arena for over 30 years. Brian recently lost his beloved wife to Alzheimer’s. He is still working through that process and decided to share his journey with you.
Retirement Awaits: What does a day in retirement look like for you?
Brian: A day in retirement is roughly getting up at 4 or 5 in the morning, writing as a freelancer to earn additional income, taking naps, walking, and enjoying friends in my sphere of influence.
Your Retirement Plan
Retirement Awaits: Did you have a solid plan going into retirement?
Brian: My wife and I had planned diligently for our retirement and saved accordingly.
We were to utilize our time together to go traveling and specifically were close to making arrangements by taking the railroad across the Canadian Rockies as my wife enjoyed the romance of traveling by rail.
Best Part About Retirement
Retirement Awaits: What’s the best part about retirement?
Brian: The best part of retirement is not being tied down to any set schedule and enjoying my freedom.
Challenges In Retirement
Retirement Awaits: What’s the biggest challenge in retirement?
Brian: The biggest challenge in retirement was caring for my wife for 7 years both day and night as we worked through the disease of Alzheimer’s and experienced the disruption in our retirement plans.
Being Widowed In Retirement
Retirement Awaits: Can you share some advice about being widowed in retirement?
Brian: Like I mentioned, my wife’s passing changed my retirement. But I do think there are some things that have helped.
- Take life on your own terms. Many have well-meaning advice on what you should do but I am finding that you still have a life and it is for you to live.
- Take your time as it relates to decision-making. Don’t be in a hurry.
- Take time for yourself.
- Grief is necessary, be alone if that is what you want and be with others if that is needed.
- Above all, remember healing is a timing process. You will never forget your spouse, but new life awaits as you carry those memories. It is a beautiful combination of past, present, and future.
Cost Of Retirement
Retirement Awaits: We want people to understand how much retirement really costs. How do you manage your money now? Do you have a budget, meet with your advisor on a regular basis, etc?
Brian: As a previous business coordinator, I am sold on the reality of not only budgeting in the business world but in our personal finances as well. Therefore, I do have a budget but I do not meet with an advisor on a regular basis.
Retirement Awaits: What’s the best piece of advice you’d give someone about to retire?
Brian: The best piece of advice that I can offer to an individual who is close or in the beginning stages of retirement is to seize the moment, enjoy each other’s company if you are blessed to have someone with you, and fulfill your dreams without putting them off.
Things I Wish I Would Have Known
Retirement Awaits: What are a few things you wish someone would have told you about retirement/this season of life/transition?
Brian: That there are no guarantees and that you should plan your retirement in hoping for the best and planning on the worst.
Best Retirement Vacation
Retirement Awaits: What is your favorite vacation or vacation spot?
Brian: My favorite vacation spot is to go to the coast of Oregon. I have many fond memories of the times my wife and I enjoyed. This would be a powerful and medicinal way of still enjoying the memories of her. I also plan on traveling to see family and spend quality time with them.
Brian shares in his professional business experience with others on his website.
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