29 Years Stronger

My first thought was, “I should blog about 29 things on my bucket list for this year.” Something about that seemed all too familiar, so I decided instead to revisit my post from last year.  Yep.  Twenty-eight things.

Twenty-Eight Things I Want To Do This Year
1). Go to the Mayan Ruins.
2). See the Canyon.
3). Learn to speak Spanish.
4). Swim in the Gulf.
5). Visit Central America.
6). Visit the Zapatista communities.
7). See the old people dance in Marimba Park.
8). Learn to make tamales.
9). Learn to salsa.
10). See some monkeys (apparently this can be accomplished with 1 or 2).
11). Understand the songs I listen to.
12). Figure out how to make more money teaching English.
13). Raise my GRE scores.
14). Learn to make more than black beans and rice in Mexico.
15). Figure out how to get water (you’d think I would know this by now…)
16). Give a testimony in meeting that doesn’t require me asking how to say something.
17). See an active volcano.
18). Learn to knit on a knitting machine the indigenous women use.
19). Run again!
20). See the coffee farms.
21). Ride in the front seat of a Collectivo.
22). Start English classes for the neighborhood kids.
23). Read a Spanish book.
24). Talk to my Mexican niece and nephew in Spanish only.
25). Find the source of music and fireworks.
26). Have a conversation without apologizing or saying, “Hablo poco!”
27). Visit a waterfall that you can swim in.
28). Scuba dive (or snorkel) in Belize.

Turns out, meeting my (future) husband two weeks after my birthday keeps me from doing most of those things, but helped me accomplish the few things I actually did.  And I know that some of these will happen yet–but the others really aren’t that important to me anymore.  Funny how a husband and a baby can rearrange priorities!

You should know, I used to be all about making lists for things that I want to accomplish–my “bucket list”, if you will.  I remember the first list when I was 20.  I was living in Minnesota with my first real taste of independence.  All I could think is “There are so many things to see and do!  And I have so little time to do it!” I made a list of 101 things to do.  My older friend (with a five-year plan that he actually followed through on) dashed my dreams when he edited my list.  He told me that half of the items weren’t important and most of the others wouldn’t be achieved.  Bah!

Now, almost a decade later, I feel like I’ve grown beyond lists.  My greatest lesson this year is the importance of taking things one day at a time–and making sure that I enjoy the moment that I am in.  (This is easier said than done when the moment is swollen hands and feet, sleepless nights, and achy parts of my body that I shouldn’t share…)  We aren’t planning (or worrying) about the future, we’re just living today and trusting tomorrow in God’s hands.  So if I were to make a new list–it would be full of on-going goals that MIGHT be accomplished in this lifetime…

  1. Learn to serve God with my all.
  2. Learn to be a mother as good as the one I have (and the one she has).
  3. Learn to love my husband as unselfishly as he loves me.

I don’t even need to go on.  This should keep me busy for years to come…


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