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  • Writer's pictureZachP

#72. Don't Wait For Retirement To Live

"Cuz everybody dies but not everybody lives"

The rapper Drake cannot take credit for this original thought, but when I heard him say it 13 years ago in Moment 4 Life by Nicki Minaj, let's just say it had somewhat of a lasting impact on me.

I am a fan of Nicki Minaj (my wife calls her my "girlfriend" . . . ), but I was never a fan of that song.

However, here I am, 13 years later, still remembering that line whenever someone I know passes away.

What's Been Going On In Our Life

My wife graduated college in 2015 and has been teaching in different elementary schools ever since.

She originally started substitute teaching while job searching. She was eventually hired to her first full-time gig teaching 3rd grade.

She originally wanted to teach 1st grade right out of college, but she was still happy to get the job.

Unbeknownst to her, this was one of her best career moves because she met the most amazing mentor she could have asked for.

This mentor and fellow 3rd-grade teacher took my wife under her wings, and my wife had the best 3 years of teaching she has had to date (her mentor even helped with our proposal!)

Her mentor retired four years ago at 65 years old. She built her dream home which included the pool she always wanted.

After retirement, my wife still talked to her quite regularly. They also discussed us coming down and bringing our son to hang out with her grandchildren and swim.

You Do Not Always Have Extra Time

About a month ago, with absolutely no warning signs, my wife's mentor had a brain aneurysm that ruptured. I am not going to try to explain any of the medical stuff.

She was kept on a ventilator for a month before passing away last week surrounded by loved ones.

Why I Am Telling This Story

The focus of this blog is personal finance and how we are trying to reach financial independence.

I stand by everything I say, such as budgeting and investing for your future is crucial.

However, I also stand by what I said in my 2nd ever post when I was laying out step six in the seven-year plan:

  • Step six: While doing all of the above things, start focusing more time on doing activities on the above top 13 list that do not cost any money.

This is a very important step I cannot overlook. It is intertwined with all my other steps. I am going to make a conscious effort to methodically work in time for these activities. This will also force me to appreciate things more in real time.

Although everyone who is able to should save and invest for their future, we should also make conscious efforts to enjoy life today, especially when we can do so at little to no cost.

Please share your thoughts in the comments below. Let us be a community that helps each other grow. And if you enjoyed this article, don't forget to hit the heart icon, share it with your friends, and subscribe for more content.

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Jun 25, 2023

Second time reading this article and still find it very meaningful. Yup, don't sacrifice too much of today for tomorrow. Plan for the future, but live in the present.

Jun 26, 2023
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I'm so glad you were able to take something away from it. Thank you for taking the time to read it.

I really like what you said - "Plan for the future, but live in the present." Finding that healthy balance that works for you should help create a happy life :).

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