May 20th, 2014
i have a friend who has battled cystic fibrosis the entirety of her life. recently, that battle has become far more challenging than she ever thought it could be and has learnt the meaning of having faith, determination and strength. i look on at her life and i am an admirable fan of what she has achieved in defiance of such a terrible condition. as an early-twenty-something year old, she had travelled and embraced the wonders of the world that many of us don’t see until the ripe old age of 60, retired and dribbling. she lives everyday with meaning and finds laughter and joy on every turn of life. i am in awe of her ability to stand strong in the face of fear and all that having a terminal illness entails.
if there was anyone more deserving of a lung transplant, it is her. no doubt, no question. but as the day her phone rings with the news of a transplant rapidly approaches, i have watched her put together a bucket list.
now i can’t exactly say i support this, only because my heart very much errs on the positive view that a transplant is going to be the beginning of a new life glazed with opportunities that were never offered to her before, not the end of it. and i know im not in her shoes, nor do i know first hand what its like to stare a double lung transplant in the face and not feel like there was no avail. but i do wish i could help her believe in the positive words she superficially says above the underlying fear, and really believe that this operation isn’t deserving of its own bucket list.
i want her to save her bucket list for a day forty years in the future. when she has wrinkles and thirteen grandchildren. because i know that this transplant is only the beginning of a life lived even better than she has already.
and i guess the whole bucket list thing has got me thinking about all the things i would like to accomplish before my own children try to have me commited to an age care home with bingo Tuesdays (not that i would complain, I’ve always been a huge fan of bingo).
i don’t think i bucket list should be filled with solely extravagant things, i think there should be plenty of normal everyday guilty pleasures included. i think it should be realistic and involve things that can be shared with the people you love most. i believe a bucket list should be more than a list of things to do before you “kick the bucket” as they say – but instead be a list of adventures to embark upon and treated as a map to the greatest events of your life hand-picked by your hearts desire. like a navigation tool that ensures you reached the destinations and life lessons you were always meant to.
my bucket list is still very much in the process of being made, i do figure i have a great many years ahead of me to finalise the details. but here is it’s foundations, and i entirely plan on lengthening the list as i go…
#1 – get married!
#2 – buy and own my own house: no debt!
#3 – get a masters degree… Contemplate Med School
#4 – make Clinical Nurse at work
#5 – travel; everywhere I’m able, and a new place every year until I’m 60!
#6 – dine roof-top in New York City
#7 – slow dance to a brass instrumental band
#8 – learn how to cook everything in Grandma’s recipe book!
#9 – ride in a hot air balloon
#10 – swim with dolphins
#11 – learn to play the guitar
#12 – watch the baby turtles hatch and reach the ocean
#13 – learn how to ski!
#14 – bungee jump
#15 – see the northern lights
#16 – go on a cruise!
#17 – scuba dive
#18 – shoot a gun (safely and without hurting someone, of course!)
#19 – be a bridesmaid
#20 – go to a drive-in movie
#21 – skydive
#22 – ride in a helicopter
#23 – finish a degree with honours
#24 – buy a puppy (name him Igloo)
#25 – read ‘Bringing Up Burns: 26 Books’ booklist
#26 – ride a zip line
#27 – take Latin dancing classes
#28 – have a White Christmas!
#29 – drive a racecar
#30 – save $20,000
#31 – volunteer at an animal refuge or become an animal foster carer
#32 – holiday in a rainforest tree house
#33 – explore the prison where Ned Kelly was held captive
#34 – go white water rafting
#35 – visit ‘Hogwarts’ (cue tourist picture at Platform 9 and 3/4)
#36 – Ice skate
#37 – stay in a five star hotel
#38 – go on a roadtrip (more than a week long!)
#39 – stand-up paddle boarding
#40 – make my own Magnum Ice-cream
#41 – backflip off a bridge
#42 – cuddle a lion
#43 – ride and elephant
#44 – go jet boarding
#45 – see the glow worms of Natural Bridge, Gold Coast
#46 – learn to ride a motorbike
#47 – trapeze
#48 – have children!
#49 – write a novel
#50 – holiday at Uluru in a luxury tent
#51 – participate in a 5km run for charity
#52 – volunteer in a Third World country
#53 – be an artistic genius and paint a canvas to hang in the house
#54 – go to Tomorrowland in the UK!
#55 – start a photography page
#56 – Be an entrepreneur (I’m thinking project: small business)
#57 – Successfully achieve 10,000 steps everyday for one whole week!
#58 – Holiday in Bora Bora in a reef hut
#59 – Donate Blood
#60 – Snowboard
#61 – Take a pottery class
to be continued…
i do like the idea of a bucket list, just make sure you don’t have one because you’ve given up hope. always have hope.