Yesterday, Mrs. Fire Station left on a ‘girls trip’ to Florida with four friends of hers. She is looking forward to some fun in the sun as the days are already turning a bit crisp & cool here at home. In fact, I know she would love to spend the winter months someplace sunny when we retire. I am sure she will bring back some information on the resort she is staying at in Sarasota, with some pictures like the one above (although it is raining today).
Over the last few months, Mrs. FireStation has started to tell people that “I guess I’m retired next year when my son leaves for college”. She has been a stay-at-home mom since our son was born in 1997, and next spring he will graduate from high school and leave the homestead. Because he is our only child, we are in the fast-lane for empty nester status come Fall 2016, which will be a big adjustment.
I don’t expect that she’ll want to go back to work. She first stayed at home when our son was little, and her being home has always provided the work/home balance we’ve needed with my career. In this way, our work/home balance was simple – I worked and she was home. For the most part that has been effective for both of us, although she did have a part-time job as a preschool teacher for a couple of years.
Since money wasn’t a driving issue for us, there was never a compelling reason to tax our work/home balance more. We’ve given up a lot of potential earnings to be sure, but I think we can both say we’ve gotten a lot out of her being home in terms of our quality of life.
Now with our son in his senior year of high school, she can look forward to being retired, should she choose. One of her friends (in a similar situation) has taken on a part-time job at the local mall, but I think my wife will be happy to have her time be her own for working out and other activities. She has talked recently about getting a dog, taking a class, or getting involved in some charitable activities next fall. Together we would like to travel more and enjoyed the freedom from commitments that early retirement will bring.
While she hasn’t spent as much time obsessing over retirement plans as Mr. FireStation has, but I know she is looking forward to the process of crafting a new lifestyle (while missing her son at college!)
Image Credit: Pixabay