Are you a planner? I sure am – it’s probably one of my most annoying qualities. I can’t help it, though….I like to make the most of the time that I have (in a day, and here on earth), so I do my best to schedule things and fill it up with stuff that matters. Someone asked me recently (while scoffing at the calendar that was open on my desk and the kajillion obligations that I have coming up in the next two months) what I had planned for the next 20 years. I laughed and started to tell her that she was a jackass for mocking me – but then I stopped. Hmm. She made a good point. Where do I want to be in 20 years?
In 20 years from now, I will be 61 years old. Holy shit. No doubt I will still be cute as hell, and my rack will still be awesome (please don’t interrupt with a dose of reality – I’m not interested). I will still be working in Education in some capacity, but hopefully at that point, I will be about 5 years from retirement. (Fun fact – if I retire at the age of 66, I will have worked in this industry for 46 years. Yikes.) My Wee One won’t be so wee anymore – she will be 28 years old, and probably working on building a life of her own. I hope that she will still want to hold hands and be best friends with me – I guess time will tell on that one. I want to have made some of the trips that I have on my list (I’m looking at you, Bali!), and I want to have learned how to paint (art, not walls). I want to have learned to speak one other language, and I hope to have mastered the bagpipes by then. I know that I won’t have cured cancer or the common cold, and I know that I won’t have done something so amazing that Diane Sawyer calls for an interview, but…I’d like to have made some contribution to the world that left it a little better than I found it. I hope I can figure out what that is.
I want to be living in a home that I love, one that is full of warmth, laughter, and love. Bonus points if it’s paid off by then!!! I don’t want to be living alone anymore – I’ve done that, and I don’t choose to live out my days that way. I want to spend my time in the company of those that appreciate me, not tolerate me – again, I’ve done that long enough, not doing it anymore. I want to still feel well enough physically to enjoy life, and I’d really, really like it if I could finally find some relief and peace from the constant agony that is my left arm (which is hurting like a mo’fo these days). I want to not have to worry about money anymore – I don’t expect that I will be rollin’ like a rock star (although I believe in my heart that I would truly excel at that type of life), but I do want to live comfortably, and not have to worry. That would be nice.
Most of all, I want to be happy. I want to look around me and feel joy at what I see. I don’t want to feel annoyed, and I sure as hell don’t want to become one of those people that complains ALL THE DAMN TIME. I really dislike that quality in others, and I certainly don’t care to try it out myself. Ick. I’ve worked so hard in recent years to adopt an attitude of gratitude as I go about my days, and that is something that I really want to see continue. There’s a lot of great things in this world – it’s my duty to appreciate each and every one of them. I have spent a fair bit of time lately focusing on doing more of the things that make me happy – I’ve not been working quite as much, I have been saying no to things I don’t want to do, and I’ve made spending time with those that I care about a real priority. I’ve met some amazing new people, and actually taken the time to live like a normal person with a social life and everything….it’s been great!! I’ve been watching all of the hockey playoff games (which you know makes this Canuck happy), and the time that I’ve spent cuddling on the couch with hockey and wine has been some of the best moments that I have had in years. See how little it actually takes to make me truly happy?
I’ve also been making plans for the summer, which I’m SO excited about! I’m really looking forward to a few weeks off work, taking a couple of trips, and spending time with the people that I love. I’m also looking forward to spending an entire day in bed, and not putting pants on unless I have to go to the store for supplies (it’s good to have dreams). I want to go kayaking, sit outside and enjoy some (a lot of) wine, swim, and just be happy. It’s going to be GREAT.
I came across this article on Lifehack today, and it made me smile – 40 Little Things in Daily Life That Bring Us True Happiness.
1. Finding money in your pocket that you didn’t know you had.
2. Being asked by someone who cares how you are doing.
3. Climbing into bed when you have fresh sheets.
4. Taking an extra-long bath or shower when you have some free time.
5. Smiling at a child you see in public.
6. Receiving a 10 minute massage from your partner or friend.
7. Cuddling someone before you have to get up and start your day.
8. Waking up and realizing it is a sunny, beautiful day.
9. Having a long phone conversation with someone you care about and haven’t spoken to in a while.
10. Watching the rain fall when you have nowhere to be, and you can curl up on the sofa.
11. Watching children playing and laughing together, reminding you of the joy in the world.
12. Spending some time with your pets – or animals in general!
13. A stranger giving you a genuine smile.
14. Having a nice, long stretch when you first wake up to get your body moving.
15. Laughing out loud at a funny memory.
16. A gesture of kindness from someone in your life – as simple as your child helping you cook dinner.
17. A smell you love, from baked bread to a freshly mowed lawn.
18. A meaningful, long hug from somebody you care about.
19. Putting on clothes after they have been warmed on the radiator.
20. Taking a few moments alone when things get hectic.
21. Watching the sunset or the sunrise.
22. The smell outside after the rain has stopped.
23. Listening to your favorite artist or album.
24. Receiving an email or a letter from a friend.
25. The chance to be creative, from painting an old set of drawers to doodling a picture.
26. Holding hands with someone you love.
27. Eating your breakfast in bed.
28. Playing a game you used to love when you were younger.
29. Eating healthy, tasty food that makes you feel good about yourself.
30. An extra half an hour to snooze in bed.
31. Having some time to yourself to read a book you love.
32. Buying your favorite drink or snack and savoring it.
33. Receiving flowers from someone who cares about you.
34. Eating your lunch outside in the sun.
35. Trying out a new recipe and creating something delicious.
36. A gesture of support from your friends or family.
37. Listening to a song you used to love and haven’t heard in years.
38. Taking the time to help someone with their problems.
39. Spending time in your home when it is tidy and clean.
40. Achieving a small victory, like fixing the washing machine or replacing a light bulb.
Great list, eh? I know! There is nothing on there that’s too revolutionary, but all really sweet, wonderful things that feel good. I think that’s the kind of life that I want to have in 20 years – it’s the kind of life that I want to have NOW. I want to spend my days revelling in the sweetness of the world around me. I’ve said before that life to me is like a beautiful summer peach…let’s all bite in, and let the juice run down our chins. Good deal?