I ran away from my problems. I thought that I could stay and things would get better; all I had to do was work harder to find a job because being jobless had taken me on a vision quest like no other I had ever experienced.
The bills that could not be paid, the son that could not continue in college, the car payment and car insurance that I could easily afford when working that I was scrambling to afford each and every month was more than I could stomach.
The interviews that I did get were not appointments to interview me for my talents, but a cattle call of geriatric wonders like me. We would stand in line for hours to see if we could actually work for the money that they offered or if we were just another cog in the wheel of a startup that was desperate for people to sign others up for Medicare or Obama Care and after the period of employment you would be left go again and the insanity would start all over for me.
So the escape plan for me started the day in January that enrollment for Medicare was over. I had received an email that probably any other time would have been considered junk mail but this time it was fair game. It talked about starting your life over again and being able to afford it by working overseas at home.
I was intrigued and read the whole article; I was not interested in signing up for the magazine or the course on how to be a travel writer, I just needed to know that others had already done it in some form or another. I researched blogs, vlogs, and expat sites, I asked questions and joined as many sites as I could, I was hooked.
I spent the better part of a month reading and writing and corresponding with people who had made the jump. They jumped to Nicaragua, Panama, Costa Rica, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico. I decided to jump ship too, my alternatives for staying on my positive – negative list were not compelling enough for me to sit through one more cattle call interview, I could keep working to try to replenish stock lost in the last Wall Street crash but that would take until I was too old to even enjoy retirement. So……
I minimized everything, the 5 grown children’s (store it at mom’s) memories, all the things that you really think you will need at one time (that you don’t), the man toys, the fabric collection in the sewing room, the furniture, the executive clothing, the barbecue, the boat… the car,,, everything went. Then we went…. to Ecuador.
This blog is about why it is an option that really needs exploring for more people than you can believe. The people who cannot sleep at night worrying about how they are going to survive their golden years. The difference in stress for me once we decided it was an option, was like night and day. My husband was retired military, I had moved many times to foreign countries and knew that this time I had to pick a place that was low-cost, had great dental/health care, housing that we could afford, transportation and organic food. I found it in Quito, Ecuador. Did we go there first? No. I don’t think that we could have afforded to, we just did lots of research and jumped, no ran. Our alternative was to stay there long enough to afford a trip home if we could not stand it. We were not sorry that we did it this way, it was less of an adjustment knowing that it was really important to try to put everything in perspective. What we had before, what it would take to live like we did previously or adjust to our new retirement. It was a no brainer.
This is my journey, it could be yours too, just ask or follow along with us. We have had the opportunity to become the people we could only dream of when we were living in the United States. I know it all sounds so crazy, it did to me too when I first thought about how was I going to accomplish this stunt,, but I did it,, and I am not sorry that I did. I know that we did what was best for us and our future,,, what about you? Have you saved for your retirement, do you rely on social security or disability? There are options that are considerable, they are just not in the United States. We came to a brave new world, full of colonial Spanish architecture, with buses that cost very little, taxi’s that are very inexpensive and food that is great.
We didn’t speak Spanish when we arrived, but day by day we are using our new language and plan to immerse our lives in their culture. It was the best of both worlds for us, come and join me on my redefinition of myself.