…And Speaking of Portland Bliss


Dear Liza,

It has been three-plus years since my retirement and it seems that I am just now getting the hang of it. It took a while, certainly, and I still might not have it right. After 40-plus years of working, it has been hard to slow down.

I actually used to get depressed at the end of the school year. I was a teacher, after all. And what is a teacher who isn’t teaching? The idea that we ARE what we DO, that our essential being is defined by work, had gotten into my head.



So I tried to stay equally as busy after I retired. I spent every day at the Historical Society and set a goal of writing a historical children’s story. I loved the research but my results were ….. unsatisfactory.

Then Covid hit, and the rest of the world retired, too. The talk was all about finding peace in idleness, not living to work, and making small happinesses within yourself. It felt right.

Being given permission to be ”lazy”, to not have to change the world all at once, was a gift.

So I can take a whole morning to read Jane Eyre in the park. I can sit by my garden and enjoy the company of the bees. I can think good thoughts and not demand that they funnel into immediate ACTION. I can live just to live, for a while.

And so can you.

Love,

Grandma Judy