In the first article of a four-part, weekly series about boomer women professionals and retirement, Lustre’s Founders, Karan Wagner & Erica Bird discuss “What Surprises Boomer Women Professionals When They Retire.”
We are women on the leading edge of the wave of boomers who have worked for decades and are now starting to retire. We knew, way back in our brains, that one day we would retire. As the date got closer, the reality began to take hold.
Our offices and assistants were reassigned, our successors were named. We knew that the loss of our work — and ready-made conversation and colleagues, deadlines and commitments — would create a void. We understood that our time would be largely our own and that we would need to figure out what to do with it. What we did not understand until after we retired was that the end of our careers meant that we would lose part of our identities too.
We had not recognized how central work was to how we saw ourselves and how the world saw us.
Now that we have, our approach to retirement has changed.