Two weeks ago, I turned fifty.
I have never feared aging. I consider it a privilege and the alternative really sucks. As I have gotten older, I find that I have become more content with what I have and who I am. I have finally gotten to the point where I am pretty comfortable in my “not so elastic” skin. Getting older has freed me from societal norms and enslaved me with others.
I love books. I have recently completed a book by Elizabeth Gilbert where she talks about living a more creative life. She comments, “living a life that is driven more strongly by curiosity than fear.” This statement really resonated with me. It had me thinking. I live a wonderful life. But I worry that I have not been brave. I have made safe choices and with those choices came very little risk.
Life is short so I try to live my life with few regrets. I fill each day with as many things as a twenty-four hour period can hold. I LOVE to be busy. I do worry that I have spent too much of my precious time on tasks and chores and not enough on dreaming and daring to imagine my life in a different way.
My kids are almost grown and my full days are about to change. Change is scary and a chance for growth. I guess you could call this a preemptive strike against irrelevance.
As I embrace turning 50 and the next phase of my life, I would like you to join me on my journey. I have been compiling a list things that I would like to encounter or change in my life. I have been adding and subtracting and rewriting my list for some time. I have been stockpiling vacation time and some extra funds to fund this special adventure that I am calling “50 at 50”. This list will seem geriatric to some and crazy to others. This is my list and I am excited about some items, nervous about others and wondering if I can get it all done. Make your own list…
A few days ago, I shared my list with my three teenage daughters. As with most things, each reaction was unique. One daughter was interested in joining me on some of my adventures, another was unsure if I would have time for the family and the third daughter wondered if this was one of the mid-life crisis and should she be concerned.
So with fingers crossed, I begin the journey.
- Write a monthly thank you to someone who has had a big impact on my life
- Give blood
- Spend an entire day completing random acts of kindness
- Grant a wish from my mom’s bucket list
- Get real with money
- Say no and mean it and feel no guilt
- Ask for help with no guilt or delay
- Allow myself to be photographed more often
- Spend a weekend at the monastery
- Learn about other religions
- Join my church as a member
- Lose 20 pounds
- Belly Dancing Class
- Pole Dancing Class
- Body Cleanse and Detox
- Tai Chi
- Learn to Bartend
- Learn to Grill
- Take an improv class
- Rock Climbing
- Hot Air Ballooning
- Disc Golf
- Laser Tag
- Paint Ball
- Big Repairs on the house this year
- Get a tattoo
- Have a reading by psychic
- Go to the rodeo
- Grape Stomping–yes like the time Lucy and Ethel made wine
- Tandem biking
- Compete in an event at the State Fair
- Drive a convertible
- Work for a flower shop and deliver flowers for a day
Write a blog
- Read a new book each week
- Read all the books that my book club selects
- Film Festival
- Music Festival
- Get a passport–the plan to travel out of the country begins..
- Road Trip alone…Thelma and Louise with no Louise…
- Train Trip
- Stephen Colbert Show
- Independent Bookstore Tour around the Midwest
- Visit with a cosmetologist for a makeup makeover
- Have a colonoscopy