A Life Reimagined – The announcement
I know that after today everything will change. I am sending the following email to my department to let them know that I’ve chosen retirement date. I’ve been nervous all day just thinking about it. Am I doing the right thing? Is it the right time to announce my retirement in the middle of a worldwide pandemic?
However, I am at peace that the time is right, the time is now, here goes……
Good afternoon PDS,
I’m very excited to share that I have decided that on my 44th work anniversary, which will be March 28, 2021, that I’ll be retiring from PDS.
While I have so enjoyed working for Snohomish County in general, and PDS in particular, I am also thrilled about the possibilities for the next chapter of my life. I don’t really love the word “retirement” because it infers I’m going to stop doing things. I’d rather say “a life reimagined.”
I’m very much looking forward to traveling internationally again when that’s allowed but I also want to spend more time with my kids and four grandchildren. I’ve considered dabbling in art, possibly learning a foreign language, and taking up music again. These were all things that I enjoyed when I was younger but as a working mom for most of my time at PDS, I haven’t had the time or energy to try the activities I left behind. I’ll continue to hike, bike, and snow ski. I’ll also work on staying in good enough physical shape to not get hurt!
I know that change and transition can be hard, especially at a time like this, but I am fully committed to making a good transition and leaving well. I believe that over the next seven months I can make a great hand-off to the leaders in our department. County Executive Somers and the Executive team have some hard decisions to make as we approach 2021 in collaboration with the county council about priorities. I know you will be invested in helping implement any of the decisions they will need to make. The challenges to the county budget will be significant next year and it will take everyone pulling together to continue to provide services to the residents of our county given the fiscal outlook caused by the pandemic.
If you observe me shifting a little bit from some of my regular duties into other areas, this is only because I want to make sure that I’m available to mentor and coach those that want some of my help with this transition.
My biggest regret about the COVID situation and the timing of my departure is that it is unlikely that I will get to have the big retirement party I had always hoped for. While I’m a little disappointed that we won’t be able to gather for one last staff meeting in person, I understand that at this time it just wouldn’t be safe.
I’m very excited about having the opportunity to start the third chapter of my life! If you have questions or need my assistance I’ll be here with you until the end of March, please don’t hesitate to reach out so we can catch up. Afterward, remember that I am not leaving the area. I would love to continue the long term personal relationships I have formed with many of you. I consider you my dear friends and family.
Barbara is the new star of the Rock Your Retirement show! For one year, she'll let Kathe Kline tag along as she goes through her retirement journey.