Right now, I'm in a huge State of Anticipation. Five months from today, I will spend my final day in Pakistan. In a little over 2 months, I'll head back to Texas to try to accomplish the impossible.
During those 14 days, I need to look for a house and buy it, hoping for a closing date in early July when I return for good. I also have appointments to see my dentist, ophthalmologist and financial adviser. Throw in a visit to the Social Security Administration to find out what my benefit will be and you can come close to feeling my pain. To add to this, I've begun making a list of everything I will have to start paying for once I'm a normal citizen again. In the Foreign Service when you are assigned abroad, housing and many expenses are provided for you. Those expenses will now return to me. It wouldn't be so bad if I was still earning my current salary! Pen to paper, I've tried to estimate expenses, income and just what the minimum I will need to live comfortably. How much can I afford for a house? Can I get by with just a part time job? Not knowing what my exact monthly income will be makes it difficult to estimate anything! As you can imagine, my anticipation level is quite high. Closer to a stress level.
I anticipate I will be just fine. I've always lived well within my means and things won't change when I retire. I just want to be able to afford a few things...like visiting my son and his family in Hawaii a couple of times a year. Like going out to dinner when I feel like it. Like not having to say "no" to myself for a new pair of shoes. We all hear the stories about people who didn't plan well for their retirement years. I hope I've done a decent job. I plan on getting a part time job and hope it will be enough for me to live comfortably. Time will tell.
I anticipate lots of challenges ahead but also anticipate I will be just fine.