Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Nothing Happened

     We talked to B's son by Skype over the weekend. "What's new?" we wanted to know.

     He told us about a new assignment at work. He moved to South Carolina about four months ago to take a job. He's learning new skills and meeting new people. He's also decorating his apartment. He got a dog at the animal shelter and started his first class of puppy training. He made some new friends -- people who live in his apartment complex -- and they all had dinner together the night before. Next week he's going to Raleigh, NC, to get some management training.

     Meanwhile, B got home Monday night. "Anything new at work?" I wanted to know. "Nope, same old, same old," she said. "How about you?" she asked. "No, nothing," I confessed.

     We talked to my son on Friday. He's traveling up to Albany, NY, next weekend ... for some reason, he wouldn't tell me exactly, he was being vague and kind of mysterious. The week after that his company is sending him to Austin, Texas, for three days. And he signed up to play tennis -- at the rooftop courts above the train station.

     I talked to my sister this morning. She's retired. "What's going on?" I asked. "Not much," she replied. She recently had surgery and has been mostly house-bound for the past three weeks. Her only news: The physical therapy is going well. And ... oh yeah, her husband made her breakfast this morning.

Their calendar
Our calendar
     B's older son called the other day. He was excited because he'd just interviewed for a new job, in New York City. He'll probably be moving soon. He shares an apartment with two friends, but their lease is up next month, and he's ready to get his own place. Besides, if he does land this new job, he'll have to move anyway. Oh, he and his girlfriend went skiing over the weekend. And he's talking about going back to school part-time to get a master's degree -- especially if this new job doesn't come through -- and he's taking the GRE exams next weekend.

     We had dinner with an old friend Sunday night. "What's new?" we asked. "Nothing. Just working." The husband thinks he's coming down with a cold. That's about it.

     But their daughter? She relocated to Texas last fall, and she loves her new job and exploring all the new places and has been having fun moving in and decorating her apartment. And, oh yeah, she's got a boyfriend now. He seems like a nice guy.

     I talked with my ex-wife. "What's going on?" I asked. "Oh, nothing really." She's dealing with getting onto Medicare and wondering if it was time to start Social Security, or if she should wait. Otherwise, just day-to-day living.

     It's nice to have a settled retired life, with no stresses or strains, no fears of an uncertain tomorrow, no new adventures on the horizon. Okay, I'm exaggerating a little here. My sister is planning a trip to Seattle. And B and I do have a few things on our calendar: We're going dancing next weekend. We're planning a week-long vacation for the summer. And, uh ... yeah, the electrician is coming over later this week to replace our kitchen light.

     But, ah, to be young again, starting out with your whole life ahead of you, new places, new people, new experiences, new opportunities. Do we live vicariously, through our children? 

11 comments:

MerCyn said...

Yes, at times we do live thru our kids. On the other hand there are lots of fun things we do. Today for instance we are waiting for FEMA to come and look at our house, my mother-in-law is moving from rehab back to assisted living, we are anxiously awaiting a new possibly flood-producing storm, but we are going out to dinner - it is restaurant week in our town!

#1Nana said...

We're at a different stage in our lives from our children. They are building a life, we are reaping the rewards of a life well built. My grandchildren will be visiting us this summer for two months...it will be a flashback to that hectic time as young parents. I look forward to the change, but I know I will be ready to return to calm and quiet once they go home. (But two weeks later I will be missing them and all the activity.)

Linda Myers said...

I used to be as busy as the kids you describe. Nowadays, it's exhausting to hear about what they're doing! We are busy, too, in our retirement, but at a different pace.

Janette said...

I absolutely love that they are having adventures. I am not compelled, in the least, to have the stomach for day to day moves.
My day is exciting enough....I have a doctor's appointment:>)

Stephen Hayes said...

I think many people do live vicariously through our children. This might not be true in my case because my son is a mechanic and a very technical person, two things that I am not. And he isn't into travel, art or history, things that I love. But he's a marvel when it comes to fixing things and I must remind myself not to take advantage of him.

Douglas said...

The post reminded me of the joke we often played on management when the came in in the morning (I worked midnight to 8 AM):
"How'd it go last night?" they would ask, "Anything important?"
"No," I'd respond, "once the water was cleaned up, it was pretty quite."
"What water?" they'd ask... looking concerned.
"Well, the firemen made a bit of a mess putting out the fire."

"Fire!?! What fire?"

At this point, we could no longer keep a straight face and the whole thing would break down.

Barbara Torris said...

I find myself saying...TALK TO ME, I NEED TO KNOW WHAT IS GOING ON OUT IN THE WORLD! Your conversions with children and grandchildren sound very much like yours. On the other hand, maybe the less we know the better!


b+

Warren Lieberman said...

Nothing is better than the 3 am call, "I am alright but...."

One of those will make you wish for nothing.

June said...

If everybody lives vicariously through their offspring, what does that say about me, who has no offspring?
Am I dead? :-)

Warren Lieberman said...

June:
You may be envied.

Anonymous said...

I've found that the way you were before retirement is the way you are going to be after retirement. Age has nothing to do with it. If you liked a full calendar before, then you are going to like a full calendar after wards.
When my daughter calls me and asks 'What's going on?" I tell her I just got back from a committee meeting on aging, a spring invite from the local diner, I have a poetry reading & art showing of a new & upcoming artist who just happens to be 94 years young (he didn't 'find' himself till after 9/11 despite living through the Great Depression and WWII) to attend next Friday (wine included). Saturday afternoon I'm meeting a bunch of my family in NYC for an early dinner at a hamburger joint (and a couple of beers), March 10th is our local St. Pat's parade. Every Thursday I take 'conversational Italian' for free at our local library because SO and I hope to plan one more trip to Italy before we really do die, April 4th starts my intense Digital Photography adult course since I've already self-taught myself as much as I could after getting a new dSLR camera, cause I like to take lots and lots of photos. Oh,and there's an upcoming baby shower I'm planning with my sister and aunt to be held in the spring in Greenwich Village in NYC in two months.....having it at a chic French Bistro. Ever since we all got back from Paris, we think we're giving birth to La bebe of the 21st century.
I mean really, Sightings, you live so close to NYC. Why don't you just hop the LIRR and take a walk around the city for some energy? LIRR has Sr Citizens discounts. TimeOut New York always has free things to do. But you probably never did those things before so why would you be doing them now?
Oh, and did I mention I scored two $29.50 ticket seats to see Lewis Black up in Albany vs the $150 seats down on Broadway NYC????

As a fellow baby boomer who partied at Studio 54, Max's Kansas City and Regine's I am nowhere near throwing in any boring towel. I was active before and am jam packed now.

My kids call ME and ask how to use Face Time, the iCloud and other Apple Inc ditties.

PSS: I'm also in the midst of planning my own Spring Break. Haven't missed a year yet. Doesn't cost much to drive down to Myrtle Beach or the Carolina coastline.