living off the time grid


My life has always been ruled by calendars and clocks. As a child, seasons flowed through the school year. As an adult, time was counted in work weeks, dead-lines, pregnancies, baby stages and then school years once more. Weekends were treasured. Summers yearned for. Holidays began with the lightness of freedom, but a heaviness inevitably descended as they drew to a close.

What would it be like to live off the time grid? What would I do with all the glorious hours and days when retirement finally came?

Hubby and I are quickly learning what others have told us over and over. Life does not slow down when you are retired. It changes. We decided that it was time to flow with the change and have a fresh start. We’re moving. The chaotic stress of purging and packing is forgotten in the excitement of new beginnings.

Our new home is on the water, providing lots of opportunities for playing and partying with our kiddies and grand-kiddies. It is also a wonderful spot for slowing down and pondering; a writer’s dream!

I’m not sure where my writing will lead me, but write I will. I’ve been thinking a lot about what road to take. Do I pick up where I left off? Do I try something different? Is it time to write the book I’ve always dreamed of writing? If so, what would I write about?

With all of the unexpected events that have come my way these past months, I’m ready to sit back and give myself over to the God of surprises.

life’s transitions

Ray Roussin
Bishop Raymond Roussin, SM in Gravelbourg, SK

The optimist views life’s transitions as opportunities for character building, the metaphorical fires that purify gold. Sometimes, the transitions are overwhelming. We yearn for the boring days of “same old, same old”.

Life events have forced me to face inevitable transitions for over a year now. Some are glorious. Our family rejoiced as we welcomed two more beautiful grand-babies last summer.

We are also grieving the end of a child’s marriage and the pain and uncertainty that it brings when young children are involved.

We mourned the loss of David’s father, and journeyed with his mother and family through the difficulties of the first year without him.

After selling our practice to a wonderful young dentist, we have been mulling the big retirement question. What next?

Last month, we lost a dear mentor, and spiritual guide. Archbishop Raymond Roussin, SM has been a treasured friend for almost 40 years. His death marks the end of an era for many of us. I struggled to write a fitting tribute to him for the Prairie Messenger.

Sometimes we can control transitions, choosing when, where and how we choose new paths in life. Other times, especially with unexpected losses, all we can do is hope that the journey will eventually bring us to new truths and deeper wisdom.