There are five days left until my birthday, and I will not finish my list.
What didn't I finish?
1. Finish a 10K.
2. Ride in a hot air balloon.
3. Raise $1,000 for charity.
4. Buy and drink a really expensive glass of wine.
5. Read 10 great works of literature (I did make it to seven- so 3 more!).
I received an overwhelming response of emails and conversations with friends that told me I should give myself an extension. I did have a couple of surgeries in there, and encounter a few strange setbacks that aren't typical for my life.
I really don't know what kind of timeline I can give myself for running the race, since I am not very certain what the outcome of the back surgery will be. I know I will need to take it easy post-surgery, so I will not be out there running. I won't be sitting like a bump on a log either, so I am sure I will be able to meet this goal by the end of the school year (even if "running" isn't very fast).
I am going to contact, recontact, and brainstorm on how to ride in a hot air balloon. Like I had said before, the company is out of business, so my gift certificate is not valid. I can't imagine how this could be allowed, and there has to be someone I will come in contact with that can make this happen. I will keep thinking on it.
I really want to raise the money for charity. We were planning a music event at the school, to raise money to bring creative after-school programs to my students in Moore County. I wanted to expand their minds and bring them hobbies and classes that will help them in the long run (like photography, a book club, intramural sports, etc). I know if we can get to planning, we will be able to have the event planned for winter (January?).
I can read three more books in a matter of a few weeks, so that really shouldn't be a problem. I do start classes in January, so I am very certain I will be doing a lot of reading over the next four years!
And I am not really certain where I was going with the wine. I know I wanted to really understand wines and learn something about the higher end wines. I know if I bought an expensive bottle, I would not be thrilled about opening it. I guess this is something I was reserving for a special occasion, so perhaps New Years Even would be a good time for a bottle that's special?
I already had in my mind that I wanted to create another list. I am definitely finishing this list, but I know that I have more goals that I would like to achieve by other milestone birthdays (40 being the big one!). I would like to put some thought into another list, and maybe organize it so that I can complete a major goal each year for the next ten years? I would love to hear if anyone has ideas on a good goal. I am excited and ready to embrace 30, and I imagine I will be at a completely different point in my life by 40.
I had dinner with Jeremy last night, and we talked for hours. I told him about the purpose of the project, and how it was important for me to have goals when looking at a major life change. As you will remember, I created this list on the heels of a divorce being final. I was looking out into the world and seeing all of the opportunities that lie ahead. I feel this way now--I see that I am a strong and independent woman, and can do anything I set my mind to. I also see that I can take care of myself, and am very self-reliant.
But now, more than any other time in the past year, I realize that I don't want to live the rest of my life that way. I remember a few weeks ago, when I was traveling around Washington. I went to Wal-Mart to buy something, and I can remember thinking to myself that in fifteen years I would be able to take off and do whatever I chose. I would be able to live my life of independence, and I would finally be free.
Sitting on the couch last night, talking with a glass of wine in my hand, I realized I don't want to be alone. I like that I am capable of doing things alone, but I don't want that to be my life. I want to sit and talk with someone, and share my life. I want to have common goals, or to have the support for those dreams that are my own. I liked the idea of being free and being a drifter, but I realized I liked the idea of being part of a couple. I liked the idea of sharing my life and all of its stories with another person.
I remembered that book I had mentioned long ago, by Elizabeth Gilbert. She talked about the fact that she didn't want to be married. She didn't want to be tied to someone, and after divorce she thought that the whole idea was a joke. She was looking at a forced marriage to her love, and she was panicking. I remember reading toward the end of the book that her travels out on her own to Cambodia were not what she hoped, because while she was out there "finding herself," she was missing the idea of being with Felipe even more.
At the beginning of this journey, I understood her free spirit. I wanted what she had, and I was ready to take flight at the next opportunity. Now, I feel more like she does after her trip to Cambodia. I have a rich and exciting life now, even when it is just reporting to work most days. I want to share those experiences, and my hope and dreams of how my life will be with someone. I want to plan holidays and raise children and have a life. I feel like I've been ripped off in that department.
Maybe that will be one of my goals for the next project.