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Goodbye, tortoise, it was good while it lasted
Senior moments
Rich DeLong is the executive director of Station Exchange Senior Care. - photo by File photo

Lately, I have been thinking more and more about retirement.

In fact, I can honestly say there’s not a day that goes by without my thoughts drifting off to a place where life is quiet, slow and easy. It’s not like I’m dissatisfied with my job; I love what I do. I think I’ve just been doing it too long — or possibly too much!

Or maybe I’m resisting the inevitable that as time moves forward, life will continue to get more and more complex. I’m not a big fan of complexity. I subscribe to the old adage: Keep It Simple, Stupid. They call this the KISS Principle.

How many times have I heard someone tell me, “You better slow down”? Too many times, I guess. And yet, my whole life has been moving at Mach 5 speed while my hair is on fire. Maybe that is my problem: I’m running out of gas.  

You know, I could be allergic to work, some kind of delayed reaction for which I was predestined at an early stage in my life, which has now just surfaced in the form of Can’t Get My Butt Outta Bed Syndrome. Believe it or not, there is such a health issue — although I think they have given it a more-technical term.

Lack of sleep could be part of my dilemma. I don’t function well or think clearly when I’m tired, which would explain my thoughts of retirement.  

Who am I kidding? I’ll be working until I’m 80!  

People say when you are doing something you love, then it’s not really work. But that doesn’t apply in my case. As I said earlier, I love what I do. So what is my problem? Maybe I just need a vacation. Nothing better than time away from work to help me realize that work is all I really need to make me whole again. Right, that’ll do it — not!

Come to think of it, I’ve always been one who walks to my own beat of the drum. They used to call that creativity. Life feels good to me when I can do my own thing on my time schedule, with the necessary resources and people needed to get the job done right. By George, I think I’ve got it!

The work world has dramatically changed over the past five to 10 years. Today’s workforce has been told to do more with less — less time, less people, less money and less resources. We are told we need to be more creative, yet that is exactly what is missing in this formula, because there is no time for creativity.

And my generation is probably the last to feel anxious and agitated about this transformation of how work is to be performed. Our next generation has already been indoctrinated into this new way of work. It’s a churn-and-burn society. I’ve tried to hold on to the values my father taught me as a little boy that slow and steady wins the race.

But I think the hare is finally going to take home the gold. So much for the tortoise — your time may have finally come to an end.

Call  DeLong at 912-531-7867 or email

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