When I retired at the end of July I had surge of enthusiasm for my new life of freedom, a freedom from the petty constraints that come with having a job. For many years I’ve dreamed of living a life that would allow me to devote myself completely to artistic pursuits and not have to work. I imagined myself writing poetry and fiction and essays, working on drawing and photography, playing a bunch of different musical instruments, etc.

My experience since I retired has turned out to be a little different. I have been slowly, gradually, learning to let go of my manic propensity for taking on more and more creative projects. I’m starting to appreciate the wisdom of relinquishing a few of my ambitions and trying to get down to the basics of my life. Now I’m mainly focused on writing poems, trying to delve down deep in them, to reach as much as I am able into a deeper layer of my life. This has come to be the biggest priority for me now. And I also spend some time practicing music, because that is one of the great loves of my life. And I do some reading each day. I also appreciate having a lot of open time, time in which to simply be, without struggling to achieve anything or without trying to “improve” myself.

I’ve come to love spacious open days with not much going on, but with a lot of time in them, and space, and light. And awareness. Days in which one can be simply human, without having to strive to prove something to the world.