Looking forward to retirement

If you’d have asked me six months ago whether I wanted to retire I would have said ‘NO’ very loudly. It wasn’t the right decision for me at that time. However, ‘time’ is a wonderful thing –  situations change; views change. Now is the right time to decide.

Working on the eRostering system I use is a daily reminder that I have Alzheimer’s. It’s a daily reminder of how much slower I am, how little I can concentrate etc etc.  So it’s having a daily negative impact on my life and right now I just want positives. I’m certainly not saying I don’t want to work post NHS, because I do. However, I’m in the catch 22 situation whereby I still have a mortgage and live alone. If I take a less stressful post or reduce my hours I wouldn’t be able to afford my mortgage, so the only option open to me is to retire, use the lump sum to pay off my mortgage and then start a new life. Money has never been that important to me – I don’t have expensive tastes, don’t drink or smoke – I live a very simple, contented life. So the fact that I will have little to live on doesn’t worry me, as it may do others, as long as I have enough money to pay the bills.

Well it’s official – I retire on 31st March. Can’t wait. I feel like I’m in limbo at the mo.  It will be good to be able to do all the things I want to do but don’t have the time for. I’ll be able to do so much more to contribute to the work of the Alzheimer’s Society, get involved with local projects,  go to places when I want to go to them. The biggest misconception in wider society is the idea that those living with dementia are all elderly, that we have a carer, that we can’t get about and need lots of help to do everyday things. We will eventually, but there are months or years ahead where we can function on our own, albeit with support from our loved ones. We need to be seen, feel as though we’re  making a valuable contribution to society and still have a voice as we live well for as long as we can.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ll also miss working in the NHS and my work colleagues (well, most of them!) but if I choose, I can work part-time somewhere. Having choice, that’s what’s important.

More time to chill with Bill - although I'm not very good at chilling so he may have to get a wiggle on to keep up with me!
More time to chill with Bill – although I’m not very good at chilling so he may have to get a wiggle on to keep up with me!

About wendy7713

On the 31st July 2014 I was diagnosed with Young Onset Dementia. I may not have much of a short term memory anymore but that date is one I’ll never forget. I’m 58 years young, live happily alone in Yorkshire, have 2 daughters and I’m currently still in full time employment in the NHS. However, I’m now in the process of taking early retirement to give me a chance of enjoying life while I’m still me. I've started this blog to allow me, in the first instance, to write all my thoughts before they’re lost. If anyone chooses to follow my ramblings it will serve as a way of raising awareness on the lack of research into Alzheimer's. It will hopefully convey the helplessness of those diagnosed with dementia, as there is no cure – the end is inevitable. However, I’m also hoping I can convey that, although we've been diagnosed, people like me still have a substantial contribution to make; we still have a sense of humour; we sill have feelings. I’m hoping to show the reality of trying to cope on a day to day basis with the ever-changing environment that dementia throws at those diagnosed with the condition. What I want is not sympathy. What I want is simply to raise awareness.

4 thoughts on “Looking forward to retirement

  1. You’re so right about having time and having met you i don’t think you’ll be sitting !! a part time job would be good , nice to feel wanted , or help at your local memory cafe if the Altz society don’t keep you too busy . Anyway it takes time to get all those lovely photos organised, wasn’t it fun to be touched by Stardust x Veronica

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Veronica! Do you mean the comments on the blog post? If people post a comment, mum has to approve it before it gets published. So any approved ones are on the post when you scroll right down to the bottom. Does that make sense? Apologies if that’s not what you’re asking! Gemma


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