Monday, June 20, 2011

29 and FINE (The Bucket List, Part I)

In high school (shout out to Nerinx Hall, WOOT!), there was one class that everyone LOVED to take - Christian Life Committments.  If I recall correctly, it was mostly about relationships and one project was to plan your wedding.  Seriously - we put together three ring binders with pictures of flowers and dresses and venues, with the one stipulation that the wedding ceremony itself had to occur in a church.  I'm pretty sure you even had to involve a male counterpart in the madness to collect all available points.  Obviously, the purpose of the class wasn't to identify the best DJ or perfect your future bridesmaids' up-do.  We were encouraged to give serious consideration to how we wanted to spend the rest of our lives - the careers we would have, the places we would go, the people we would choose to be by our side.  I remember thinking I would go to med school, but also be married (to my high school boyfriend, of course) by 23 or 24 and have two adorable children by 26 (maybe twins?!), and somehow, eventually wind up as the Surgeon General or traveling the globe with Doctors without Borders.  In hindsight, this wasn't really a plan at all- more like a list of what the 17 year old me thought the best case scenario for my "adult" life looked like. 

I love to plan, I love to execute the plan....... but I've learned that sometimes, the best things that happen to you come from Plan B or having no plan at all.  On the fourth day of classes during my first year of college at Loyola University Chicago, I realized that Biology/Pre-Med wasn't for me.  After changing my major a few times, I stumbled into two - Politics and Womens' Studies.  A retail management position with a for-profit company saw me through grad school and into a development role with a non-profit organization.  The first person I was engaged to isn't the person I'm happily married to.  So.  We outgrow some of "dreams" when reality is so much better.

Starting when I married Brian and growing as I had Cameron and then overwhelmingly affecting me when I had heart attack, I felt the need to make some sort of bucket list.  I'm not sure there are any rules for a bucket list, other than you must check them off before you die (as if you could check them off after?!).  So, in no particular order, here are some items on my list so far:

  • Kiss the Blarney Stone
  • Have a Mint Julep at the Kentucky Derby
  • Celebrate my 50th wedding anniversary
  • Attend Fashion Week in NYC, Milan, Paris and London
  • Learn to SCUBA dive (which is funny, because snorkeling made me sea sick)
  • Visit Australia
  • Go on a safari (well, as long as it is eco-friendly/animal preservation focused)
  • Revisit where my grandparents grew up in India
  • Write a book
  • Travel in space!(Btw, I LOVE Star Trek TNG.... don't judge)
  • Adopt a daughter
  • Hike in/near a rainforest
  • Learn to waterski on one leg... learn to waterski in general
  • Attend the Emmys or the Oscars or the Golden Globes (and wear a FAB dress)
  • Ride in a helicopter (but not because I'm being airlifted to a hospital)
  • See my kids graduate kindergarten/grade school/highschool/college

Some things I've crossed off:
  • Get married
  • Have a baby
  • Learn to ski or snowboard
  • Stand on a volcano

  • Touch a glacier
  • Volunteer in another country
  • Stand at the Southernmost Point (YAY, Key West)
  • Visit the 1st Starbucks
  • Receive a Masters degree (can't find a pictures, my mom took them all!)

I truly believe you should have an idea of where you want to go, but be able to embrace where your path takes you.  I probably won't do all of the things on this list and I'm sure that, over time, the list will change.  Maybe Cameron will do some of them with me! Life changes, but for me, this remains the same - I want to be good at my job, I want to be a good friend/wife/mother, and I want to somehow change the world for the better.  How I do these things will be the fun part.

Cheers to the last year of my twenties!  The best is yet to come.  I can feel it.

One more thing - I'd love to know what's on YOUR bucket list!  Comment on this post or on my facebook post of this blog :)

"To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream; not only plan, but also believe." - Anatole France

"If anything is certain, it is that change is certain.  The world we are planning for today will not exist in this form tomorrow." - Philip Crosby

"Always remember to slow down in life; live, breathe, and learn; take a look around you whenever you have time and never forget everything and every person that has the least place within your heart." - Unknown


  1. Well, the first thing on my bucket list right now is "visit Rachel and meet baby Cam". I can't wait to cross that off this weekend! I love you dear, and I can't wait to watch you live out your dreams-- no matter how many times they change! :)

  2. I have kept a bucket list for myself also... I keep it written down at home, and it is constantly changing.

    Being a great friend/companion/person in general is one of them.

    Taking a non-judgemental approach on life, and embracing what everyone I love wants to do with their choices. :)

    Oh, and riding in a Hot Air Balloon would be fun!