Hiatus of indeterminate length thread

Hi,
This thread is about a hiatus of indeterminate length I am going to undertake.
Probably a down market day isn’t helping my mood, but this has been on my mind for a while.

I really still miss the old TMF format, and a lot was lost when they made their change. Combined with the dreary Covid period of late 2020 thru 2021, things just haven’t been as fun as they should be. This has felt like a chore since 2022 and I don’t remember when/how I signed up for it. I guess part of me was thinking that if I kept posting, maybe the old TMF vibe would resurface eventually, so I was trying to do my part in that.

Anyway - this is not “goodbye forever” as those never last and are kind of a running joke with me.

Just had some teammates impacted by a layoff. I am not quite ready to retire, so this is disruptive as I have to cover some additional workloads, at least for a while, which wasn’t in my 2024 plan. Speaking of which, I did a really good job in the gym working out the past 2 years or so, and 2024 is where I hope to take that to another level, and that is both in being more active away from a computer and at least being more disciplined with what and how much I eat. The ex wife still creates some drama and my mental energy seems tapped with trying to be present for the final high school years of my youngest kids. Soon they will all be out and about in college.

Somewhere I read the point, which broke my heart a bit:

“You probably never thought about this, but around 90% of the time that you will have spent with your parents was done from the ages of 0 to 18.” — Donn Felker

They go off to college, so you get Summer and school breaks…call it 3.5 months times 4 years = about 14 months.

So you see your kids more or less daily for 18 years or so.
Then next 4 years you get about 14 out of 48 months with them.
Now they may live with you for a bit until they land on their feet or they may be off and running with roomates and internships and their first jobs and that is that.

My parents live 20-25 min away. I see them what…7-10 times a year? Christmas, Thanksgiving, some bdays, maybe Easter, Mothers day/Fathers day. Random days like help with gutters or yard work or stain their deck.

ACCCCCKKKKKKKKKKKKKKK. Damn it. Makes me want to cry just thinking about it.
Holy crap. Are most of us just living the Cat’s in the Cradle song?

Being a dad was the best thing I ever did or got to do.
Point is, I am starting to really resent things that seem to be clogging up my remaining time as a hands-on father. When it comes to this site, I think it has hurt, more than helped, my investing since 2022, as I feel compelled to think/write/justify moves. Reality is I am at my best when I allow investments (not trades) to resolve themselves. Which takes months if not years. But definitely not days and weeks.

I have stocks in mind. I have target/entry prices in mind. In some cases, the exit prices too. If they hit, I buy and wait.

I hope KC and others continue to post as much as they feel like. If it makes you happy, do it. I just need a break. I blinked and woke up and now I am 50+ and the kids are not kids anymore, and the parents are getting older faster and faster and I am not really thrilled about any of that. So much to be happy and grateful for though. I just need more free time to go focus on the things that matter most, while I still can.

Will be back from time to time.
All the best.

Dreamer

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thanks for your contributions! 5

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Go enjoy life and your kids while you can!!
Just hope your kids don’t go to an out of state college like my kid did. He decided to stay and take some summer classes also!! We fly down to see him more than I ever thought we would.
I’ve enjoyed your posts and will miss them but, life is full of changes.

zoro

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Bummer you won’t be as active, but understandable with your situation. Sounds like I’m about 10 years ahead of you in that my 3 kids are all out of college now and on their own, so I’m in that “seeing them only for a limited amount of time each year” period you describe. I was able to spend a lot of time with them all through the years as I worked from home for the last 20 years of my career before retiring and never missed any of their school/sports events, and got to do a lot with them.

As you state, the Motley Fool boards have really changed, I think it’s partly from the change they made a couple years ago to the format, but mostly because of the horribly down 2022 that hit MF stocks especially hard. But the boards are ghost towns now, hardly ever are there new, interesting, informative posts/discussions.

I’ve frequented the boards for the past 15+ years (they were the best thing about the MF site). Around 2016 I started concentrating on Saul’s board more, thought I’d really found something special (and it was for a few years, before they locked out access to all but a few, then it became an echo chamber with few dissenting voices). I realize after 2022, and that board’s reaction to it, that even with their curated top members, they didn’t see the bubble/overvaluation for what it was. I reduced my holdings out of the highly concentrated SAAS portfolio before they did (still lost a bundle!) and diversified those funds into stocks that did great throughout 2023 (I still have many of the SAAS favorites, just not at the concentration level I used to). I think they still have up a post on the permanent side board that says “This time it really is different” regarding the SAAS business model, well 2022 proved that wrong yet they never said that was a mistake (it was) in any sort of lessons learned post (maybe some individuals on the board alluded to it). Seeing as I can’t post there anymore, plus the fact that I did about double as well as most of them for 2023 (up 66%), I really have had much less interest in that board since late 2022.

That led me initially to Mongoose Chronicles board, but when Champs(?) left there, that board died (for now). It brought me over here, and even though I disagree with some of Dreamer’s views on what’s going to happen with the economy and market overall, it’s been nice having a place where there have been continued discussions.

Hopefully this board will continue with enough posts to make it interesting and worth coming to read. Will try to do my part.

Best of luck to you Dreamer.

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Dreamer, I’ve appreciated your thoughts, especially as a value counterpoint to Saul’s board. While I’ll miss your frequent posts, I wholeheartedly support your desire to reassess what’s most important to you. Good luck!

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Dreamer,

I always enjoy reading your thoughts on this board. I don’t post very often, but I check regularly for any updates.

I can relate to your situation, as I’m probably older than most people here. My kids are 27 and 31, and we have experienced the circle of life with different levels of interaction as they grew up. I still remember the drive home after dropping off my son at an out-of-state college and wondering where the time went.

But I will say that when the kids are older, the interactions are fewer but more meaningful. I used to think that choosing the right college was the last significant decision I would help them with. But that’s not the case. There are many more important decisions to come, such as relationships, jobs, etc.

For those who are younger, you might not be familiar with the song “Cat’s in the Cradle” that you mentioned. But the end of the song is quite sad:

I’ve long since retired, my son’s moved away
I called him up just the other day
I said, I’d like to see you if you don’t mind
He said, I’d love to, dad, if I can find the time
You see, my new job’s a hassle, and the kids have the flu
But it’s sure nice talking to you, dad
It’s been sure nice talking to you
And as I hung up the phone, it occurred to me
He’d grown up just like me
My boy was just like me

However, that’s not how it is for me. Even though I retired and moved away, we still keep in touch regularly. Communication is much easier now than it was back in 1974, when the song was written. Back then, you only had a landline phone or a letter. Now we have family group chats and facetime, which help us stay connected and close. We also visit each other frequently. Unlike the song we always find the time for each other I think because it’s so much easier to communicate these days!

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Dreamer - Always a good decision to take a break and focus on what is important in one’s life at any given phase in time.

I am always reminded and in turn I remind my readers that we invest for life, for love and for happiness. If investing is taking us away from these goals then we need to reconsider our priorities.

I commend you for what you shared with us. I wish you all the best and come back when you feel ready. Your perspectives are always enlightening.

Personally, I can share a bit about where I am in life…

I retired 2 years ago (at the age of 50) and have absolutely zero regrets. Best decision of my life. I am healthier than ever. I sleep better than ever. I am less stressed. i also have very little gray hair…people think I dye my hair. LOL
My wife’s career is taking off as I manage the household and give her the space to focus on her profession. I love seeing her more happy, less stressed and succeeding. She made career sacrifices when our kids were young.
My eldest just traveled to Spain for a college semester abroad. I miss her terribly. But I am learning how to be a father that guides when needed, without hovering too much. Young adults have to learn their own lessons along their life path.
My youngest is a junior in high school and since I retired, I am able to support him as needed. e.g. last Summer we drove about 3,500 miles criss crossing the country for baseball tournaments. My dad retired when I was 17 and I cherished that extra time with him. So I get to enjoy the same with my son.

It is so easy for us to get mired in the daily mish mash of our jobs, the markets and our finances. We often lose sight of the loved ones who are right in front of us.

One way I am trying to address this is to listen more intently when a loved one says something / texts me etc. I dont think I have been a good listener in the past…that “just give me the executive summary” habit that has been drilled into me over my 28 year professional career. It is hard to reverse, but I am trying.

Cheers and see you here soon.

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Good for you. If you need time to clear your head, then go for it.

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I haven’t replied to this post because there is so much I could say. But, basically, good for you. We have figured out that I am pretty close to your father’s age. My grand children are 19, 16, and 12. And when that 16 year old grandson came out of the terminal–I hadn’t seen him for 4 years–it was quite a shock.

I don’t intend to let 4 years go by without seeing that 12 year ol grandson. Trip being planned.

I’ll keep posting on the portfolio thread(s). Try to make it more than a list of stocks though I have little original comment to add.

KC

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