Volunteering is the icing on the cakeSome people reading an aging article such as this, have completed a good number of work years and are enjoying a well-deserved retirement now. Most of us lucky ones thought and found it to be the golden years so frequently mentioned in the literature. For many of us that has been our good luck.
Some people reading an aging article such as this, have completed a good number of work years and are enjoying a well-deserved retirement now.
Most of us lucky ones thought and found it to be the golden years so frequently mentioned in the literature. For many of us that has been our good luck.
There is another aspect however, which I want to address today. I mentioned in a previous piece that I grew up as an only child on a dairy farm surrounded by work. I was taught the value and satisfaction of work as a very young lad.
Retirement is better and good enough all by itself for a period of time. Complete and total idleness does the trick. Read stuff that you didn’t have time for earlier. Same goes for watching TV programs or email for those of us who have computers. No problems with those things that had to be done.
Mark Twain called that play. It isn’t just little kids that like to play. We all enjoyed our free time once retired from work and played and played and played.
But in retirement there is nothing to do except play. At first that really hits the spot. Down the road a ways for us lucky ones who get to live those extra years. But, that idle time can get to be a bit disconcerting. You see other folks satisfyingly working yet at their regular jobs and others who are doing volunteer work. The more of that you see and the folks enjoying it, you begin to think, how about me?
Speaking as one of those volunteers for several years, I can say that it is the very best kind of work available for us old fogies. You can select the area of participation. You can determine the amount of time that you are willing to volunteer. Some of those volunteering folks even go south for the winter or summer vacations as well. Up to them,
For those who would like to consider volunteering, here are two people who can discuss specific volunteer opportunities: Jo Nurminen, RSVP director, 1416 Cumming Ave. (715) 394-4425, or Rhoda Nagorski, director of Senior Connections, 1805 N, 16th St., (715) 394-3611.
Call either one, or both, to discuss a get together. They welcome your calls and visit. Both organizations have a social session or two where volunteers are recognized as well as socialize.
Volunteering does lead to work, but work isn’t hard and seems more like play, when you enjoy what you are doing. These women will help you find a project that you will enjoy doing. And most of these volunteer positions are helping other people who need help. That makes it doubly satisfying.
We all get a real satisfaction for helping someone else. It comes, I think, from the Golden Rule: “Do unto others…”
It’s hard to find anything more satisfying. Volunteering isn’t the traditional work of life for us older ones. It is the dessert.
Bernie Hughes, Ed.D, is a retired educator who resides in Superior. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.