Am I retired yet?


By John Vidakovich
John Vidakovich“Are we there yet?”
I asked that question from the back seat as a child and answered it from the front seat as an adult.
“Not yet,” was the usual response. In latter years I borrowed the phrase, “we are there, we are just looking for a parking place.”
We are all anxious to arrive at our destination. The excitement of the journey, punctuated by long passages of boredom (after all, how many corn fields can you look at before you get tired of the driver saying, “look at the beautiful country?”)
Excitement and drudgery. Seems to be a pretty good description of life. Mountain top experiences eventually yield to the floor of the valley and life resumes until the next big event.
In that meantime our imaginations can run wild. We build up expectations, some quite unrealistic, about the next big thing. We wonder what it is going to be like when we get there. Will it be as wonderful as we expect?
I again find myself in the backseat again asking the driver “are we there yet?”
I am headed to a new destination called retirement. I have heard from people who live there and they report it is wonderful for the most part. They relish not being in charge of everything, not being the topic of discussion at morning coffee. They tell me they have time to do things they want to do, that they are just as busy or busier than they were when they were working.
Sometimes their news is comforting and other times it is frightening. Retirement is being done and starting over all at the same time. That sounds daunting to me. And exciting.
Please say a prayer for me in the back seat. A prayer for patience, a prayer of trust, and a prayer of thanksgiving for all that has been and all that is to come.

(Rev. John Vidakovich is pastor of Petersburg UMC in the Sangamon River District and a member of the IGRC Retiree Class of 2018)