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Subject:  Re: seeking secrets of a happy retirement Date:  1/18/2005  1:33 AM
Author:  jesserivera67 Number:  44095 of 88807

Hey Selena,

I concur with just about everyone and thought a tale might do some good here. It's along the same lines as The Badger and some others talk about.

My two grandfathers passed away recently. Not a good start to a tale but let me explain.

For now I'll reference them as Grandpa Joe and Grandpa Bob.

Grandpa Bob passed away of natural causes at the ripe age of 84 in April of 2003. Not to shabby eh? You figure, "Wow, he lived a very long life." Well kind of. They lived off of social security and since they lived waaaaaay below their means this wasn't a problem for them. His wife, my grandmother, was the love of his life. Absolutely did everything for the man. Married 50 years. In early 1995, grandma was diagnosed with colon cancer. This was a horrible time for him and me as we were very, very close. She passed later the same year. The horrible thing did my Grandpa Bob.

Yes he lived on for another 8 years but he dreaded waking up each and every day. We spent time with him, went to senior social events, but nothing worked. He would sit in his room and watch TV all day. He'd come out to eat now and again and even throw out a joke or two but it wasn't the same Grandpa Bob. What happened?

Despite living well below his means and not really having financial concerns per se. Grandma did everything for him. His kids had grown and he never set any goals for his retirement. I miss him tremendously but I wish that he was able to live his last 8 years happy. Although he'd never admit he was not happy if he were here, I knew otherwise. His reason to live was gone and he was just waiting for his turn.

Grandpa Joe had a similar circumstance. His wife, my other Grandma, was diagnosed with Diabetes in 1975. She passed in 1978. So what happened to Grandpa Joe? He just recently passed away in November, 2004. 26 years after her passing. Why? Grandpa Joe was far from being done. He was a very independent man as was my grandma. He had his farm to tend to and a family to help mature and grow. They had 13 kids. No sir, Grandpa Joe was going to keep going.

He worked until his last breath. Anything he could do until a lung collapsed and he was unable to keep going at his pace. 94 years old, 13 children, 38 grandchildren, and 42 great grandchildren. That 93 descendants that resulted. Was it in part because Granpa Joe had a goal and that goal was to continue raising his kids, grandkids, and great grandkids and while he couldn't tend the farm anymore, he had a garden that you had BETTER not touch or he'd give you a good yelling!

I miss them both tremendously and love them equally of course. I wish Grandpa Bob perhaps had a few goals of his own but all his goals were with his wife. When she was gone, there wasn't anything left. So when The Badger says, "the absolute wrong answer is 'I dunno'" I think he's right.



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