Way back in high school I made a list of 21 things I wanted to do before 21. I wanted to put on paper all the things I'd talked about doing -- like skydiving-- but never managed to make happen. I guess it was my way of holding myself accountable. I know, I was such a smart teenager. Granted, I'd lose my list from time to time, which made it hard for me to remember what I promised myself I'd do. But whenever the list resurfaced again - usually at the bottom of a storage bin or from within the depths of my car - it was always such a treat I could cross a few things off (like the time I studied abroad right before my first list expired and I was able to cross off "travel outside the u.s.")
But I digress. 21 has come and gone and I've since made a 25 by 25 list -- that I immediately lost -- and a 30 by 30 list. Well, ladies and gentlemen. This is the year I turn 30 and while I haven't revisited this list in a few years, I've realized I barely made a dent in my 23 year old self's aspirations.
Honestly, looking at this list now, there are so many things I feel are missing and so many things I no longer find important (I'm looking at you Mickey Mouse). But what's most surprising is how realistic I've always been with myself and how much my goals may differ from what my family or society expects from me. Yes, at 18 I had "get a kiss in the rain" and "fall in love" on my list, but those were normal teenager things to want! Normal things that One Tree Hill and the O.C. taught me to want. Although, if we're being honest here, I never did get that kiss and I didn't fall in love for the first time until after my 21st birthday.
I never had "get engaged," or "get married," or "have babies" on my list. After my first list at 18, I never added things to the list that I had no control over or societal pressures. Because isn't that what fulfillment in life is about? Making shit happen that you want to happen? I'm the only person responsible for my own happiness. For my own self worth. If I'm unsatisfied with the trajectory of my life, I'm the only one that can make a change. Hell, I made a big ass change when I decided to end my 4-year relationship with my live in boyfriend, quit my job and move to NYC. Yes, I had a lot of help from a friend with the new job, new city part, but still. Its my life, and on my deathbed, I only have myself to blame if I never perfected Julia Child's Boeuf Bourguignon.
I'm not going to lie here, I'm embarrassed by how little I've actually crossed off this list in the past seven years. I've had "go skydiving" on this list since I was 16 or 17. But honestly, my priorities have shifted. And honestly, I've gotten so many opportunities through work to do things in the city I never would have dreamed. Have I taken a cooking class yet? No, but I have taken two wine and cheese classes, a pizza making class and a macaroon making class. Have I splurged on something I'll pass down to my daughter? No, but I've splurged on plane tickets. I'm not saying these aren't still goals. I mean my grandparents bought me a guitar for this very reason and I still haven't been able to cross it off! So, in the next 9 months, I'm going to try remember this list. And if not, you may just see them on 35 by 35...
learn to play my guitar
take a cooking class
visit the west coast* (San Fransisco/NAPA; Dec 2015)
go to disney world (again) as an adult
go on a cruise
feel confident in my body
take a photography class
get a nice camera
take a cake decorating class
splurge on something i'll pass down to my daughter
go camping again
run a marathon
take a better passport photo
pay off a student loan
visit a new continent
learn to play piano
see a live talk show
Tell me, what's something that's been on your bucket list?