I turned 35 last week and pretty much had the greatest birthday ever. I spent time with my family, shared drinks with good friends, and hit the road with Elle and Matt to Savannah, my birthday destination. Through a poorly timed blustery and rainy Nor’easter, my celebration lasted for five days, landed me in three cities, left me sleeping in two hotels, and taught me one very valuable lesson: LIFE IS GOOD.
Of course, every birthday ends with thoughts on how I can make the next year of my life even better. Then I realized it’s not about my life becoming better or even more enjoyable. My life is already enjoyable; I just need to enjoy it. And because I am such a huge fan of checklists (if anything, they keep me focused and help me to feel accomplished as I check things off as COMPLETE!), I decided to put together a list of things I would like to do before my next birthday.
Some of these are things I can do so easily but don’t make the time. Other things on this list are meant to stare me in the face, to get me motivated to push myself past my comfort zone and hopefully land me in another state of mind, hopefully one of mental bliss, because I did it. Sounds so simple, doesn’t it? It probably is.
36 Before 36
- Get a job that makes me happy (even if it takes a few tries)
- Focus on school work instead of the fact that I’m still in school
- Organize my entire postcard collection
- Watch the sunrise at the beach (not alone…you know who you are!)
- Sell my entire Strawberry Shortcake collection of dolls and collectibles on Ebay
- Be debt-free (even if only for a short time)
- Participate in the Gate River Run
- Close the 1,100 mile gap between myself and this wonderful man I know
- Meet Sarah Vowell
- Learn to accept myself as everyone else already has (for better or for worse)
- Chaperone at least one field trip with my daughter’s class
- Take Elle on a vacation, just the two of us
- Take some lessons from my daughter in free spiritedness
- Visit Oklahoma
- Visit Nashville
- Visit Asheville
- Visit Key West
- Learn how to change a flat tire
- Stop being so afraid of my computer as it will not burst into flames. Or will it…?
- Write something really, really good and submit it for publication. If I’m rejected, submit it somewhere else.
- Read one new book every month
- Run a non-stop stretch of five miles
- Volunteer to read at Elle’s school
- Try one new food every month
- Learn to cook a meal that doesn’t involve a single noodle
- Get back on the road again. Eisenhower Interstate Highway System, I’ve missed you so!
- Instruct less, participate more
- Learn to walk in heels
- Go kayaking
- Go camping
- Be a better friend
- Spend more time outside
- Get rid of the chip on my shoulder
- Go swimming in a lake
- Learn to breathe and just enjoy