I am turning 54 this year. Not for another 9 months but I am officially in my mid-50’s. Weird. I graduated from high school in 1981 – 36 years ago. I have students who were born after I graduated from college. I will never sing in a rock band…or compete in the Olympics…or act in a sitcom…or any number of things that we dream of as children. I have to admit…this is not news to me.
I auditioned for a rock band when I was 17 – my boyfriend played keyboards. I sang “Call Me” by Blondie. I was not…horrible…but I do believe someone told me that maybe the church choir would be a better choice. I also knew that gold medals were out of reach as my exercise asthma spurs people to pace me with inhalers when I try running. Acting was also never going to happen…other than annually when we play on joke on the campus president. Apparently, I am quite believable when relaying some horrible act that supposedly happened between two faculty members. Enough so, that I have had to run into another room yelling “Go tell him the truth before he calls HR!”
There is a point in time that we switch slogans – from “you can be anything you want to be!” to “Fifty things to do before Fifty” and on to “The Bucket List!” So here I am…at the Bucket List point. I’d turn that into “One hundred things before One Hundred” but as we all know, we are not guaranteed even tomorrow…much less an additional 50 years. I don’t want the pressure of getting to number 89 and then having a heart attack, ending my life 11 amazing experiences short! So I will begin with no number in mind…just what do I want to see…accomplish…experience…before I pass.
If I already had a list, I would be able to cross off a few thing already. I visited Ireland and fell in love with the countryside and amazing hearts of the people there. I have zip-lined in San Diego and in Kauai. I performed at a major sporting event. Mind you – I performed with 300 other high school students in a half time dance when I was 15 and actually ran into the person in front of me, but as far as I know, Bucket Lists don’t have stipulations. I did it…therefore…it counts. I sang in front of a crowd of people for a women’s convention and didn’t pass out. I also sang the National Anthem at a military retirement ceremony. It was my husbands – and I believe the comments afterward were “boy…I’ve never heard that sung quite that fast!”
There are things that I know will make the list. I want to visit so many places in the world…Australia, Jerusalem, Scotland and so many more. I want to sky dive – although would prefer to weigh about fifty pounds less since I know I’ll be strapped to some poor sap and I don’t want him thinking “Dear Lord…why do I always get the big ones? I hope I can stop us from falling like a rock!” I want to publish a book…or story…or poem that makes people feel like we are not truly that different and helps us unify in some way.
Now..what is stopping me from doing any of these things? Nothing but me, really. Since I threw out my back last week, I’ve been faced with how quickly our capabilities can change. Maybe it’s time to not only write the bucket list…but to start making plans on checking off the boxes.
So…this is where I need your help. Give me some ideas…what is on you bucket list and do you mind me borrowing a few ideas? I would love to hear what other people have listed as a ‘must do’ before reaching a point when that dream is inaccessible. What do you want to get done while you still can? And then of course, that beg’s the question…what’s stopping you?