2008-01-30

I donít know if I mentioned it here but Fred and I went to see the movie The Bucket List and I thought it was wonderful. But it also got me to thinking. You never know how much time you may have left. The breast cancer taught me that. It was the proverbial truck that could hit you while crossing the street, for me.

The length of my life is limited in the first place and there is no crystal ball that can tell me if Iím going to be one of those healthy, spry seniors or one of the arthritic, laid up ones. The point here is that I got to thinking about that Bucket List and maybe it isnít such a bad idea after all. As a matter of fact maybe itís a GREAT idea.

I once heard a very persuasive motivational speaker. The right message at the right time can change how you think about your life. This one changed mine. He said one simple truth that struck at the heart of me. He said, ďIf you donít have a plan then youíll be doing the same thing in five years that you are doing now.Ē And I immediately had a gut reaction to that future as totally unacceptable.

Now, at 55 I have a different Bucket List than I had in my twenties. Iíve accomplished a lot of the big stuff I wanted to do with my life

1. Fall madly in love Ö check
2. Marry the person Iím madly in love with Ö check
3. Have children Ö check and double check
4. Get training for a good job Ö check (electronics)
5 Land that good job Ö check (IBM)
6 Rise as high as you can within that job Ö check
7 Become a college graduate because not being one was holding me back Ö check
8. Get an even better job where I make what I used to have to do overtime to make Ö check
9. Buy a house in a safe place for my children Ö check
10 Be a good daughter, mother and wife to the best of my abilities for what I knew at the time Ö check
11. Make sure my children graduate college Ö check
12. Be a good aunt Ö I tried Ö check
13 be a good grandmother .. In progress Ö check

Thereís more but you get the gist of it. Iíve accomplished all of the major life goals people usually task themselves with and did an acceptable job at them all. Iím sure my kids could find fault with things Iíve done in the past but I forgive myself any transgressions that I may have made in my stupid twenties and I think I improved as I went along. I hope so anyways.

Now as I think about my Bucket List I donít want to start another family, I look forward to retirement. My house is paid for. And the elderly men in the movie had accomplished much of it too. What surprised me was how shallow their last wishes were but honestly if youíve accomplished what I listed above a little self indulgence is in order because all thatís left is charity work if you are looking outside yourself for improvement and human advancement because most of your family stuff is completed.

So Iíll seek out a good cause to support and then after a lifetime of duty and sacrifice Iím going to have some real shallow life goals that I will enjoy with the time I have left because itís not all that long a time. I definitely am looking at the end of my life as a whole lot closer than the beginning of my life.

So here goes my bucket list and Iím going to add to it as things occur to me.

1 Paris, Rome, England, Ireland, the pyramids, Greek islands, Mount Rushmore, Niagra Falls, Alaska, Seattleís needle, the California Coast near Carmel, Vegas. These are the biggies but if I spent all of my final days traveling Iíd be a happy woman. So travel as much as I can is number one.

2. I want to enter a demolition Derby. I want to race a car too and if I get really ballsy I want to enter a figure 8.

3. White Water raft the Grand Canyon

4. Write a book

5. Take a picture so beautiful it stuns you

6. Complete my scrapbook life story

7. Have the guts to finally start my own business

Thatís enough for now and Iím working on number two as I write this. I intend to enter the Marshfield Fairís demolition Derby this summer and I have the word out on the street for a junk car that runs but isnít worth fixing up for a legal sticker.

Anyone up for number three with me? Isnít the Grand canyon in Arizona and arenít some people going there this fall?


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Bucket List