In three and a half months I will have my first retirement. I get asked if I’m going to work after I retire from the military. Yes, $1200.00 a month (after tax) is not enough to live off of. The next question is, what’s your next career? I have no idea. The job market is different in each location. Good news is there are still plenty of people hiring. The trick is not to be overly picky.
Being 42 years old and having my 1st pension was a life goal that I had ever since I started working. When I was young I wanted everything. Now, I’m happy with being happy. The military has been a great lifestyle choice for me. Although I may not fit the profile of a military person, it has grown on me. The wife is quick to point out military habits I have when I boast that the military hasn’t changed me one bit. For one, my ability to handle stress has been greatly honed. The military made the top stressful job list again this year. Guess 20 years of stress driven priorities will either make you or break you.
I get asked if I had a chance to do it again would I? I find this to be an oddly undefined question. Are they asking if I would start all over today? No, I’m 42 for crying out loud 🙂 Or, are they asking if I could go back in time, would I sign up again? Yes, I was 22 years old, and had some blue collar jobs under my belt already. I believe that is what makes retirement easier for me. My superiors are always asking what my big plans are. “Get a job and pay bills.” The look on their face tells it all. They have never held a job outside of the military. So to them, job hunting is huge and scarey.
So is life stress free for me. No, it’s far from it. I have a mountain of paperwork that I am processing. I’m also coordinating our move, job qualifications, house hunting/job hunting, and a retirement ceremony. Yes, my plate is full, but I am surrounded by people who are willing to help. That’s something that I have always loved about the military, its a big family. You will always be able to find someone who has your back.
So what’s next chapter in my life? The same as always, challenges will come and they will pass. I will continue enjoying life as I always have. No matter how sever the changes are in our lives we should never let fear of the unknown control us. Everything has a way of working themselves out. 🙂