I feel humbled and grateful every time someone asks if I’m writing a sequel to CAPE MAYBE or PEACE BY PIECE, or hopefully inquires if I’ve started another book.
So why do I also feel guilty each time I admit I’m not?
It’s not that I’m not writing—a blog post here, an article there.
When I was still working in my day job, I faithfully wrote at least eight or ten new pages a week. For several years, I belonged to a small writing critique group with a few retired men. Week after week, I’d bring a new chapter to the group. The retired guys might have a few new pages. I didn’t get it and once said something like, “I work 50+ hours a week and commute 100 miles a day and still find time to write. You have all day. How do I always find more time to write than you?”
In a voice that felt like a pat on the head, one of them said, “Time is different when you’re retired, you’ll see.”
I love writing and always envisioned that when I retired, I’d write full-time. The thing is; loving writing doesn’t change the fact that writing is hard work. I’ve worked a lot in my life. Is more hard work the best use of my retirement time?
When I first retired, slowing down was harder than I expected. I couldn’t imagine how I’d fill my days. Now that I’m getting the hang of it, I am surprised to find how much I enjoy life without appointments and deadlines—how much I relish quiet time with Jim, and just doing one thing at a time.
Waiting for hummingbirds to flint by my office window, or dolphins to break the water’s surface, is a pretty amazing gig.
Am I rationalizing and being lazy, or is my job right now to learn and embrace the art of slowing down?