Monday, January 12, 2009

Say Goodbye to Peter Pan

At 28, I have been out of college and working full time for four years. I have had three jobs in that four years and not once had I taken the initiative to plan for my future. I've always focused on the bills I need to pay now, the vacations I want to go on, the shoes that would be cute with the dress I have my eye on. Each obligation more pressing than the money I would need 40 years from now.

I was often nagged by a little birdie; a co-worker who was opening hers, a friend in finance...but I always had my reasons. Not even the fact that I work in Human Resources, where the opportunity presents itself everyday, was good enough reason.

Last week my reasons lost their relevance. The soles on the shoes become worn, the dress is rarely as pretty as it is on the mannequin, the vacations eventually become pictures on a Facebook album and the memories fade. The bills....the bills never quite go away but retirement age? It draws nearer by the day. And as each day passes, I lose an opportunity to save.

Friday I sat down with the retirement consultant at work. Together we laid the excuses to rest; I set up a 403B. As we talked over next steps and plan options she said something very important.

"It's time to grow up. Say goodbye to Peter Pan."

That statement instantly struck a cord in me. Those few words made what I was doing clear as day; saying goodbye to the idea that I would be young forever.

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