The Joys and Unjoys of Retirement
TEN YEARS OR so – before retirement, I was one of those who were enjoying – savouring the ‘common’ version of retirement from one’s job in ‘these Heights’, or ditto Kabanbantayan. Said version is usually heard this a-way:
‘YOU’LL RECEIVE A ‘Lump Sum’ of this o that considerable amount; and further, you’ll receive a monthly pension of ₱?, – supposed to be sufficient enough for your daily needs, until the next cheque schedule.
‘YOU’LL NOT HAVE to sweat it out in the classrooms anymore – with some few ‘difficult’ students; you’ll just stay at home – watch TV, be with your family, and enjoy the rest of the days – months, years, and so on!’ Oh, so!
HOW WE ALWAYS listened ear-erect to those lines – each time they’re brought forth by colleagues older or otherwise; by friends, etc., in some conversations and discussions. So,
WHEN MY TIME to retire was almost due, I felt all those excitements and pre-joys instantly saying to myself:
“AH-HA! SOONER I shall be retiring [And further daydream I often did, to wit:]; I shall watch TV every night and early morning; I shall bask under the sun every time I please; I shall go visit some friends and relatives; I shall join in enjoying those special occasions – held now and then. Ah, what beautiful life must retirement be! I can’t wait for the ‘sooner’ to come, ad infinitum, with my imaginations mounting and pouring out unbridled. The day came.
SOMETIME IN 2011, I retired finalement. ‘And what happened?’ You’ll naturally be asking me. I now declare:
“YES! ALL, OR mostly true – are those detailed by the versions (Supra); and maybe even more: Ah, the joys really of retirement. And unjoys? Ah-ha! There’s that unique one:
WHEN YOU FEEL that luring, endless call of your former job: it is as if saying: ‘come on, don’t leave me behind!’ Or, ‘give me some chance of an extension – until I’m finally by my own!’ And so forth. In my case, because I have been a teacher for years – and years,
IT WAS TEACHING itself – calling me ‘back’ – for an extended little time; or urging me to beckon, in gratitude. So,
MISSING MY PROFESSION by volumes of thought my self, I did go back to the universities – that time: as a ‘Visiting Professor’, they call it – same term they use when cross-teaching in other schools, through request and/or permission, before, retirement yet, which I did.
AS A VISITING Professor retired, I went ‘back’ teaching – not regularly, or at the same time: in four Universities of Baguio and at BSU, La Trinidad, Benguet. Regards to all the colleagues, fellows, students, and admin folks there: I miss you all lahh – for all-you-know!
AND THAT’S HOW I nursed back that Unjoy – that pain-somewhat of having to break with your beloved calling or Profession – by reason or virtue of-again: retirement. So,
I WAS SUPPOSED to be savouring back – the Joys of my retirement: that time I was teaching (Visiting Professor) at Benguet State University (BSU) at La Trinidad.
ON TOP OF all the ‘Joys’, I was given two of my favourite specializations – Linguistics and Philosophy, and so-lucky I was: my students were a ‘mixture’ of North and South, East and West, Highland and Lowland men and women – in the Graduate School. Oh, how we loved to listen to one another – in the lectures, presentations, and discussions! And then,
THE PANDEMIC CAME! And you and I know the rest; one ‘Unjoy’ for a retired feller like me: no more (or just a few yet) ‘face-to-face’ classes?
AH, HOW UNJOY-full my fellow retirees may now be! But can’t help, but wait – for the light at the end of the tunnel – to glimmer on to us: beckon, and clandestinely so, we pray! Ayo! Ayo! Ino!