Saturday, May 11, 2013

One Year of Retirement and What Have I Learned

Its been one year since retirement and a lot of things have gone on.

I expanded my garden, I started canning again and canned about 700 jars of items.  There are some things I will do again and things that I will not.  I tried pickling some different veggies that I did not like, made way too much jam and will do more of some items.  Potatoes, potatoes with carrots, beets, pasta sauce, vegetable soup mix are all things I will for sure do a lot more of.  Chicken, turkey and ham will be done again.  I also want to can some pulled pork and try some beef for soup or stew.

I've learned to make some different crocheted items, sold items on Ebay and opened an Etsy store and do rather well on both sites. I've learned to keep busy most of the time but when I'm not busy I HAVE NOT learned how to handle down time.  I am a person who HAS to be busy all the time.

We built a turkey coop and run so they have their own area and Thelma has been laying much better since she was moved.

We built a chicken/turkey tractor, 10' X 10' to keep the meat birds in and it cost us less than $10.

I hatched by first turkey and chickens from my own girl's eggs.  Hopefully I have learned some things and have a better hatch rate as I go along.

Most important I learned that I thought since I was not working and under a lot of stress I could stop taking anti-depressant medications.  Since January when I started on the journey of stopping until now has been a tough time.  I ended up in the ER with a major stress attack (never had one ever before), have had horrible, horrible days, been off and on several different medications, have had several medical tests and finally am on the road to me again.  I am not there yet but I will get there soon.
I learned that just because there isn't a blood test, an x-ray or medical test to prove depression it really is an illness.  Even in today's world there is a stigma on anything related to mental illness or depression.  I've had people say just think happier thoughts, pray about it, just get over it and other stupid things.  Trust me if anything other than medications would help I would do it.
I am not sorry I did what I did because I learned a lot these last 4 months, learned it the hard way but finally learned that just because I take anti-depressant medications does not mean I am crazy.  I am a very smart, creative person who just happens to have an illness that most people don't understand including me!

I've learned that I do not miss working, learned who were my true friends and learned that the older I get the less contact our family has with everyone.  The grand kids are getting older so they have less time for old people, the kids have their lives, jobs and school so we see or hear very little from them.  It is sad but I guess it's a part of life, not a part of life that I like but it is what it is.


  1. Thanks for sharing your astute observations Paula. Unlike you, I like my downtime too much and get into my books and reading to a fault working on creating more balance. I don't know much about meds but have read that even an aspirin a day can cause severe reactions when you suddenly stop taking it...evidently they say a person must wean themselves slowly. I know what you mean about the family growing older and getting busy with their own lives. We don't have grandchildren yet but are in no hurry and actually enjoying the quiet time a bit. :)
    Tracey xox

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