I taught school for 30 years, until the year 2000. At that point, I was eligible to retire in the state of Virginia, and it just crossed my mind, do I want to continue teaching or not? I felt like I was at the top of my career at that time, but I have also seen teachers that were a good bit older than I was at the time and I always said, let’s have teachers that are really on top of it. And that’s where I felt like I was, but maybe there are other things I’d enjoy doing, too. I thoroughly loved the kids, teaching.
Even before I retired, several coaches from Eastern Mennonite University came and talked to me about being a support person in the athletic department at EMU. As I looked at the situation, I discovered I would have work study kids under me. It was kind of like having a class again. And so I’ve done that for seven years now, and thoroughly enjoy the young adults. It’s like my class. I put my time and energy into that. – Phil Guengerich
We have within the community college here, a very organized College for Older Adults. You can take anything from studying opera to studying personality types, to local history. I am taking a course, Beyond Basic Computers. I certainly worked with a computer before I retired, but here you get a chance to explore other factions of a PC.
If I don’t get a certain amount of solitude, I get cranky. So I’m not going to fill up every moment of every day.
I’ve always been active. I have been a scuba diver for years and I continue to do that. I have traveled a lot, domestically and internationally, but now when I travel, it’s to visit people that I care a lot about. I’m adamant about not filling my time to the point where I have to keep a schedule. I did that for so long. Solitude is very good for me, and I don’t have a problem with it at all, quite the contrary. If I don’t get a certain amount of solitude, I get cranky. So I’m not one that’s going to fill up my every moment of every day. - Rebecca Harrington
These comments were taken from original interviews for the Embracing Aging documentary and have been paraphrased slightly for readability.
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