What I do know about what I didn’t know about retirement

I often hear from friends who are scared of all the perceived challenges facing them in retirement. Or they read something on Facebook, which may or may not be accurate, and they get freaked out about the transition from military life to civilian life.

I see those same posts. Mostly, they go something like this:

“I am so stressed out about my spouse’s retirement. I just want to cry all the time.”

Or:

“I don’t know how I am going to handle all this.”

Or:

“We have no idea what we will do next.”


Retirement Ceremony – who, what, where, when and maybe, not at all

I’m not going to lie. I was disappointed, and even a little angry, when my husband said he didn’t want a retirement ceremony.

 


On the road again, but this time without military orders - a chance to live the life we love

By Amy Nielsen

We made a huge decision as a family over the last week. We set the date to move into our RV and live on the road full time.

We have been working towards this goal since retirement from the Navy five years ago. We knew it would take a bit to organize ourselves and our stuff into a position where we could begin to think about this for real.


Work after retirement - the highs and lows of finding a job for life

I’ve applied for nearly 20 jobs in the past six months since we decided to live in Florida. Some I’ve even applied for twice.

 

I’ve had two interviews, but no offers.

 

My husband recently asked me how I deal with all that rejection. My reply?

 

“Welcome to my life. This is what I’ve been doing for 27 years.”

 

With each PCS, we military spouses reinvent ourselves. We fill new roles, either in the military unit or at our kids’ schools or in community organizations we join. And in our jobs.

 


Ready to leave military housing behind and buy your very own house? Not so fast

Buying a home is one of the biggest decisions many of us will ever make, not only financially, but emotionally as well.

It’s also one of the things many soon-to-be military retiree families look forward to the most. We want to buy curtains and rugs that actually fit and match, paint the walls and replace the flooring and install whatever countertops we like best.

We want a place of our own. Or, as many call it, a “forever home.”

But is buying a house a wise choice when in the midst of leaving the military?


Retired? Murphy will still find you

You know that old saying about Murphy, and how he always seems to show up during a deployment?

I’m here to tell you he likes to visit during retirement, too. In fact, Murphy followed us all the way across the Atlantic Ocean, although it did take him awhile to catch up.

We left Stuttgart, Germany, on terminal leave in August, 2016, and spent most of the next year traveling the country in our RV, with a cat and two teenagers.


Financial Security After a Retired Spouse Dies

Will you have financial security if your retired spouse dies before you?

Nobody likes to talk about the worst-case scenario. But when it comes to retirement, it is a conversation that every couple should definitely have.

Most of us are familiar with life insurance. There are several different types, but in general a life insurance policy pays a lump sum amount upon the insured person’s death.


Retirement means change for military kids too

My kids started their first post-retirement school in August. A couple of months in, I asked my 16-year-old if he had made any friends yet.

“Not really,” he said. “There just aren’t any other kids like me.”

We often talk about how active duty servicemembers lose their bearings when they leave the military. They might feel lost, their feeling of purpose gone and their sense of working toward a clear objective stripped away. Their peers are no longer around to share war stories. They feel like they have nothing in common with anyone.


The 12 Days of Retirement

Today, an ode to an old Christmas favorite, and some of the new challenges of retirement. Happy Holidays to all!

On the first day of Christmas, retirement gave to me … one grateful nation.

On the second day of Christmas, retirement gave to me … two pack out dates and one grateful nation.

On the third day of Christmas retirement gave to me … three DD214s, two pack out dates and one grateful nation.

On the fourth day of Christmas retirement gave to me … four panic attacks, three DD214s, two pack out dates and one grateful nation.


Need financial advice for retirement? These military-focused books can kick start your retirement planning

We’ve all heard of “What Color is Your Parachute?” and “Who Moved My Cheese?” Both are tried and true guides to starting a new career path, embarking on a new life journey, or just gaining perspective on change in general.

But there’s a whole stack of other great books out there for those who are facing a major transition, some even specifically geared toward military retirees or those leaving the military for other reasons. From finances to benefits to job searches to becoming an entrepreneur, chances are there’s a book that covers it.

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