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Born in the 50s

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social security widow/widower benefits

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Comment by Tess on June 27, 2019 at 2:43pm
  1. Funny how those life phases work, Chef John. The best laid plans often never take place, but are sometimes replaced by something we never would have anticipated. Some good, some bad. I wish you luck with your father. It's nice you have each other though unfortunate you both have the common thread  of widowhood.
Comment by chef (John) on June 27, 2019 at 7:13am

It's not courageous at all, Tess. Judith and I moved to Cleveland back in 1983, with the intention of staying here for a few years and then heading back East: to Philadelphia, DC--or somewhere else. Life happens while one is making other plans, so we continued to live here--several hundred miles from our families. We had no children, so I wouldn't be leaving anyone behind, were I to pick up and leave. The only thing keeping me here now is the house, which I would need to sell.

In the intervening years, both my parents-in-law and my mother have died. My father is now 85, and has (on occasion) half-jokingly suggested that I move back with him. If this becomes necessary (for medical reasons, for example), I would do that, but, I am also concerned about the parent/child dynamic--or (more likely) a reverse parent/child dynamic, should my father decline. I also think it would be a rather bizarre situation-comedy setting as well: two post- 60 widowers (father and son) meeting life head-on in suburban America. Nah......

Comment by Tess on June 25, 2019 at 3:23pm

Thank you chef John. I was just pondering how courageous it is for someone, especially someone that has lost their partner, to relocate to another city. What I am going through is enough and I'm moving with my daughter. I don't know if I could pull up roots to another location where I would have no one to call family or close friend. I applaud you for the consideration.

Life is full of phases, and boy have they become fast and furious lately! I wish all of us comfort in whatever phase or change we are currently facing.

Comment by chef (John) on June 25, 2019 at 8:51am


I've been to Colorado, and liked it a lot.

Judith and I used to talk about retiring in Santa Fe.

Denver might be an alternative for me to consider. :-)


Comment by Roxi on June 25, 2019 at 7:26am

Well said 'su ! You made me laugh...and it's good ciao

Comment by Barzan on June 25, 2019 at 7:13am


Come to Colorado.  We have some amazing restaurants that might need another chef.


Comment by chef (John) on June 25, 2019 at 7:10am

Good luck, Tess.

I still think about moving once I retire. I had looked for work in other cities after Judith died and got a few interviews; unfortunately someone else always got the job...I was widowed at fifty-four and looked for work until I hit sixty. Now, I'm just riding thing out before deciding how to handle the new phase of life.

Comment by LP on June 23, 2019 at 9:52am

The house problem is a difficult one. I’m very lucky in some senses. Before Chris got ill, we downsized and designed and built a small one-two bedroom house within the gardens of our old house (we owned a couple of acres of woodland and split it in half, kept one acre and sold the other with the old house). So this home means so much to me and it’s where Chris died peacefully, looking out into the woods from the bedroom. Some of his ashes are buried under the rose bushes I planted for his memorial last year. So I could never leave. It’s actually a perfect size for one person and I’ve got an extra room for guests to stay. But there’s the maintenance . I’m on my own, useless at DIY, and worried that builders and repairmen will rip me off. It’s all manageable, but my sadness and insecurities get the better of me when I’m faced with trying to get someone in to fix a faulty window or wood treat the frame, etc. I get upset and fuss at C for leaving me with this. Then I feel foolish because I know how lucky I am to have a lovely home. If only it still had C in it. 

Comment by Barzan on June 22, 2019 at 1:00pm

Nannie, My husband and I had planned to purchase a condo somewhere near the ocean when we retired.  Ne died at 63 before he was planning to retire.  I worked on to 66 and the thought of an Oceanside condo just is not what I’d do alone.  So for now I will remain in our home and enjoy the roses he planted for me.  I do have to hire people to do things for me but having no mortgage, it’s not a financial burden.   Crazy how wonderful plans can suddenly vanish in a blink of an eye.

Ron, have a safe flight and enjoy the time with your son and his family.  Be present because we never know how a day can change our lives.  Let us know you arrived safely and share some of your adventures.

I have one grandson.  He would come over and help me with outdoor chores until he found his love interest.  I get it and have nothing but love for him.  

Basically, the world just doesn’t stop for us so we need to keep moving.

Big hugs to all.


Comment by CarLady on June 22, 2019 at 10:25am

Ultra - best wishes for a smooth flight and good trip .

  1. house - I’m in the house my DH and I bought on our first wedding anniversary 39 years ago.  It was his happy place and I’m staying for now. It’s good and bad, seeing him in his favourite spots but I’m managing the keep the place up for now. Tons of work though all the cleaning , huge yard and gardens. Then snow removal all winter.  I keep reminding myself how lucky I am that I have a house in Toronto where prices are astronomical.  And that I can afford to pay for things I can’t do myself.  Moving will be a ways off for me as long as my health holds.  I’m healthy now, hope to remain strong.  Beautiful summer weekend here and I’m hosting a baby shower for my daughter tomorrow.  My first grandchild will be a boy in August. A new life.  

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