STAGE OF LIFE       Share Your Story       Coupons       Education Resources
Sign Up Now!

My 2012 Vision: A Nod to Yogi Berra

Joined: 10/26/2011
Posts: 5
My 2012 Vision: A Nod to Yogi Berra

Retirement. It’s okay to sit for an hour and work on the morning paper’s crossword. It’s okay to wonder before going to bed just what one will do tomorrow. It’s okay to find busy work around the house: clean drawers, sort through photos, read and read and read. It’s okay to discover that walking and feeding the neighbor’s dog for two weeks while they’re on vacation is one of the highlights of your day. It’s okay, isn’t it? Because if it isn’t, then I’m in trouble. And the last thing I want is trouble in my first year of retirement. Clearly, the question belies my true feelings and troubled is how I feel. So, with a nod to Yogi Berra, my concern is how to take the mundane out of retirement and find a contented excitement.

One of the main challenges in retirement lies in the guilt for not working and not having a well defined purpose in life. In our society work defines who one is. So what defines one who is retired? Oh, I know that many people have found a meaningful purpose in life while retired, but how? Some people just know. Some people don’t want to know. Some, like me, want to know but don’t know how to go about finding it. Or is it that some people, like me, are afraid to try? How does one find that structure without succumbing to expected outcomes: to feeling like one has given in to life?

You know the expected outcomes. Retired teachers are expected to substitute teach. Retired doctors and lawyers are expected to play golf and buy a second home where it’s warm. And of course, there are the grand children to watch, the committees to volunteer on, the courses to take, the yard to care for, and you get the picture. So what is wrong with these outcomes? Nothing. Nothing is wrong with them. In fact they are all grand. Just as walking the neighbor’s dog is grand. And maybe that is the problem. Life is good and now there is no excuse for not doing all the things I dreamed of in youth. And so the guilt creeps in. The inner urges poke at me to do more.

Now don’t get me wrong. I love retirement. What luxuries: easy, quiet mornings, the thrill of finding a classical radio station for our days’ background, or the satisfaction of creating a quiet nook for writing. But it is not enough. I need to push the fear aside, pull forth those dreams of youth and bring them forward.

In this year of 2012, I will conjure up those dreams and start a new adventure. It is my hope that by striving to take action, possibly bold but always thoughtful acts, I will find that state of contented excitement. It may not have the verve of youthful adventure, but it will have the wisdom and ease that the last stage of life allows. Ah, retirement.
Rate this:
Comment by DarkStar49

Joined: 5/28/2009
Posts: 335
Nice! You brought home a good point about 'work defining our lives'. I can't say how many times I have felt that 'guilt' just by simply taking a few days off to get my hemispheres in phase....and that is on such a much smaller scale than what you point out! I think maybe retirement is like finding a good fitting pair of clothes? It sounds like you are off to a good fit! Welcome to Stage Of Life!
Posted: Monday, January 9, 2012 4:58:49 PM
Rate this:
Comment by mcoly618

Joined: 5/2/2009
Posts: 474
Hi, I'm the PR Coordinator for Stage of Life. I'm leaving you this comment to let you know that your essay for our Jan/Feb writing contest is the winner. Congratulations!

Feel free to share this news with your friends and family as well as “Like” us on Facebook and “Follow” us on Twitter.

Congrats again. We look forward to seeing more of your essays/writing on Thanks for helping us in our mission of creating the world's largest pool of cross-generational stories.
Posted: Tuesday, April 10, 2012 7:35:47 PM
Rate this:

Baby Boomers (and older!) blog on StageofLife.comAbout Us is a blogging community for "Empty Nesters" and those in (or near) retirement to share stories about the adventure of life in an online journal via their free Stage of Life account.  Read the blogs and stories from Baby Boomers (and older), or check out the writing contest for Baby Boomers, quotes about retirement, etiquette advice, videos about retirement, discounts for retirement, and other resources for those in the Empty Nest and Retirement stage of life.  Register to start your free profile, share an essay about your life experiences, and pass along your wisdom to help us change the world, one story at a time.  If you are a college professor, teacher or educator - review our literacy, blogging and writing resources.

Stage of Life Writing Contests

writing contests

Enter National Writing Contest2015 Writing Contests - August

Details:  Select your life stage below to view the current writing contest prompt for each life category, and help us change the story at a time...with an essay about your thoughts and experiences.

August 2015 Writing ContestsAugust 2015 Writing Contest Prompt:  What's your story? Answer our monthly "life question" and be automatically entered into our writing contest.  This month, in 500 words or less, we want you to share one specific memory (funny, sad, poignant, scary) from a family vacation. 

Cost:  $0 (no entry fees).  There is never a fee to enter writing contests.

Prizes:  Winning essay writers receive gift card prizes from our literacy sponsors (see below).  You can view examples of winning stories on our Writing Contest Winners page.

Next Steps:  Select your life stage to get details and enter the current essay contest for your life stage...

Writing contests for high school students
Writing Contest
for High School
Writing contests for college students
Writing Contest
for College
Writing contests for singles on
Writing Contest
Writing contests about weddings on
Writing Contest
 Writing contests for married couples on
Writing Contest
for Married

Writing contests for homeowners on
Writing Contest
for Home
Writing contests for having a baby on
Writing Contest
about Having
a Baby
Writing contests for Moms and Dads on
Writing Contest
for Moms
and Dads

 Writing contests for Grandparents on
Writing Contest
 Writing contests about Retirement on
Writing Contest
about Empty Nest
and Retirement

 Twitter writing contest by
Take a minute to enter our "Short Short Story" Writing Contest on Twitter. 
National Writing Contest Winners
  View our past writing contest winners.

Bragging rights, international recognition, and gift card prizes:  Enter the free writing contests each month on

Mentions for the Stage of Life teen writing contests, teen trend reports, etiquette Q&A, and teacher resources by...

Our writing contests mentioned by
Our Teen Trend Report mentioned by MarketWatch Our etiquette resources mentioned by FOX Business Educator tips mentioned by Mashable


Each month, with the help of over 20 Editors, Stage of Life hosts and judges writing contests for both students and adults.  Select your life stage below to get the details about this month's writing prompt and submit your essay.  Thanks to the below brands, our educational sponsors, who supply gift cards as prizes for the winning essays as we help the change the world through blogging, storytelling, and our literacy-based initiatives...

 Writing contest sponsor  Writing contest sponsor on  Blogging contest prize sponsor Spa & Wellness gift cards by SpaWeek writing contestsWhat makes our writing contests different?

  • Stage of Life writing contests are always free to enter
  • Essays from our blogging and writing contests have been picked up by the media, e.g., and used by teachers as mentor texts across the globe
  • We want to hear your personal, authentic thoughts on real world topics each month.  We pick writing prompts for which your answers and wisdom may help our readers
  • We award the winners with real prizes (cash and/or gift cards) from our site sponsors
  • We have Stage of Life SWAG for the winner
  • By entering the Stage of Life writing contests each month, you are supporting our free educational literacy initiatives and your words will be reaching hundreds of thousands of viewers who visit to either share or read real-life stories

Find Us on Facebook      Follow Us on Twitter     Read our Founder's Blog is an education-based, grassroots, non-partisan, free blogging community with a mission support digital literacy by making the world a better place, one story, essay, and blog at a time.  Stage of Life users (teens, college students, Millennials, Gen Y, Gen X, and Baby Boomers) can share and archive their life stories via their Stage of Life profile page.  Specialized content includes literacy resources, free lesson plans, writing prompts for Language Arts teachers, monthly writing contests for high school students (and older generations), student blogging initiatives, blog directories, and financial literacy tools - including Life Rewards® - our free discount program for all Stage of Life users, readers and writers dedicated to providing printable coupons and coupon codes tailored towards each stage of life.

Terms of Service and Privacy