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A Watershed Day
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Today will be a day to remember for however much longer I have on this earth. You know how there are a few days--a handful of days--that happen in your life and you look back and say each was a watershed. What happened before each one, what happened afterward, you and your life were changed, never to be the same, for good or not.

Today was one of those days. I filed for Social Security benefits. Retirement. Medicare Part B.

Birth certificate, W-2, dates of marriage(s) and divorce. Addresses, employer, and so on. Each question sounded a knell--that was the past; this will be the future.

When I came to the end, after answering all the questions and reviewing all the information, I was prompted to click "Submit." I sat there for a few minutes, looking at my life reduced to a few data items. I lived this long; my career was this and that; this is my social security number; those lines are my address and telephone number, maybe the last I'll ever have.

It was with a sense of fate and the future sitting on my shoulder that I clicked "Submit" and shut down the site.

Done. Now I understand why it is that people who do not have ongoing plans and purpose to their lives for their retirement years are gone in a year or two. It feels like the end.

Or it feels like the beginning.

P.S. I got a 6% pay raise today, too.

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