Easing into a life of retirement


Four years ago on that day when I was dressing up to go to the college, my work place for one last time; I could feel tightening in my stomach. I had a weird sinking feeling as I bid adieu to the institution where I spent more than three-and-a half decades of my life in a profession that I loved.

After the D-day, the prefix ‘retired’ became a reality, though not palatable. It was not easy to deal with the upheaval in life- no monthly salary, loss of position and change in routine. All dressed up but nowhere to go became a norm. Suddenly, there was plenty of time in hand, but didn’t know what to do with it. I was totally confused and dazed missing the hustle and bustle of the college, the staff room banter, my classes, and my students. I realized that not just my books, but also saris, my prized possession collected so lovingly over the years had become worthless.

For a couple of months, I was bewildered, but then began the period of reconciliation with the new reality. Of course, applying brakes to fast pace life was not easy but I made conscious effort to shift from high speed to slow motion. With no urgency to rush, I started doing things at my own time and pace. Like air that fills the available space, I tried to reschedule my activities to fill the time at my disposal. There was a time when my husband would get irritated to see me rushing in the morning and would remark, “It seems there is fire  and you are  rushing to douse it.” But now  no ‘fire’, no hurry, no worry, I began to enjoy relaxed mornings with a cup of tea and newspaper in my hand.

At a time when I was learning to cope with the change, the pandemic hit hastening the process of adjustment. Whatever urge I had to go out was compulsorily put to rest by Covid restrictions. Staying at home became a habit.  But one routine that I followed religiously is my evening walk to the neighbourhood park which has helped me maintain my physical and mental well-being. I engage myself in pursuits and hobbies that keep me pepped up and happy.

Covid has drastically changed everyone’s life but I am thankful my life hasn’t changed much as retiree, neither my finances nor my way of living. When I look around, I find distress everywhere. Business is down. Working class is haunted by job loss and salary cut. With ‘work from home’, office has intruded into people’s home upsetting their life style. I feel sad to see small children pinned down in front of the screen for their classes. When they should be attending school, playing out with their peers, they are confined within the four walls of their homes. For the youngsters the excitement of college life has been replaced by the monotony of online lectures. Those at the threshold of careers face uncertainty. As I compare myself to others, I realize how much better placed I am.

Covid has taught me to count my blessing, and be grateful to the Almighty for His mercies. Whatever retirement blues I had four years ago are totally gone. Now, I am completely at ease with the retired and relaxed phase of life and I love it.

(Published as MIDDLE in The Tribune on 20 September)

If you wish to read what my feeling was when I superannuated ,’Retied but not Tired’ . https://lifespice.blog/2017/11/16/retired-but-not-tired/

12 Replies to “Easing into a life of retirement”

  1. Rama you have narrated the story of each one of us at MCM in such an interesting manner…it is like going back the memory lane (rushing off to douse fire) with a smile on the face because life is relaxed now. Your pen has the magic of charming the readers…keep it up.God bless.

    1. Mrs Dhawan, I don’t have words enough to thank you for not just reading my posts with interest but for your encouraging comments.I feel motivated.
      I mostly had morning time-table, hence the hurry and flurry in the morning …. But, of course, it is history now . Mornings, nay days are relaxed now.
      It is not just mine but OUR story.

  2. Rama ji it is pleasure to read your article.it seems you are speaking for us. One thing i would say is that Crona has clipped our wings and we really long to visit our place of work and meet our colleagues off and on.I cannot be home bound and sometimes find it difficult to engage myself in useful activity. I have to learn a lot from you.May i will be repeatedly reading your articles.

    1. What an honest confession !I agree we have reconciled to the reality because we have no option . I think, given an option , we will definitely love to lead an active life, go out , meet our friends.You have put it so beautifully ‘ Corona has clipped our wings’ but, I feel, we are not the only ones affected.
      Thanks ma’am reading my article with interest .

  3. Rama ma’am .. I just adore your style of writing – honest, pure, simple and mostly relatable. I’m sure it’s not only you who is enjoying every bit of new found freedom
    from the hectic schedules its everyone around who must be liking your company a lot .
    Much love n regards ma’am

  4. Thoroughly enjoyed the article. The beauty simplicity and fluidity of your language always enticed me.And the subject matter will always resonate with every professional post retirement.

    1. Thank you so much Ranjna ji. Coming from an accomplished writer, it means a lot to me.I remember your write-up on ‘Staff- room banter’,it was somewhere at the back of my mind when I wrote the piece.

  5. Ma’am, you are very honest and sentimental in this article.
    I can also relate myself to this article.I left MCMDAV college after graduation and was an innocent teenager.After joining another university for further studies,I was in a little depression in the beginning , as I couldn’t find my respected teachers and friends there.
    Life comes different phases.

    1. Thank you so much Garima for always finding time to reading my posts. Glad it resonated with you. Yes, this is what life is and change is the only constant n the world.

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