What do The Bucket List and The Last Lecture have in common?
They both refer to the to-do list that people make. The list of things to do before they die. For this post I've decided to work this idea backwards. I am going to look at what I have accomplished, both planned and unplanned, that I am proud of none-the-less.
If you remember I was rather upset about turning 30. Don't remember? Click here.
So, let's take a look back into my golden twenties in no particular order:
I suppose the biggest thing was buying my own house when I was 22. After one year of my 'real' job I wanted to move out of my parents' house. I had my mind set that I would not rent. My thought process was that I have to make a monthly payment regardless, why not pay myself? So, I did some research and the median age of first time home buyers is 32 (according to realtor.org). That's 10 years older than I was. That's 2 years older than I am right now. So, yes. I am pretty darn proud of that fact.
Second on my list is learning to drive stick shift. I know that this doesn't seem like a big deal, but when I was first learning it just seemed so impossible. So, that first year of teaching I needed to buy my own vehicle. There was no need to drive my parents' car any longer. My choice? A toyota tocoma - stick shift of course. Yup, I bought a truck that I couldn't drive. Sounds a little crazy, but I have this incredible father who totally understood and could drive standard. So until I learned, my dad and I swapped vehicles. And every evening my dad took me out driving until I was comfortable with my new skills. I'm happy to inform you that I now drive a little kia spectra - standard transmission - and this little car is SO much fun to drive. I will never regret the decision to buy that truck. THANKS DAD!!
Here's a good one...earning both my bachelors and masters degrees in my twenties. I graduated high school in 1996 when the graduation rate was 83% (http://www.epi.org/). And I graduated from college in 2000 with my bachelors degree, only about 24% of the national population has done that (http://www.census.gov/). I also earned my masters degree a few years ago (can't remember exactly when) and only 9% of the population has accomplished that (http://www.census.gov/). I've never been in the top ten of anything - least of all my high school graduating class - but when I look at these numbers, it appears as though I've finally made to the top ten percent in my education.
Getting married to the right person is next on my list. Have you ever fallen in love with your best friend? If you have then you know where I'm going with this. When I see my husband there is a weight that is lifted off my shoulders that I didn't even know was there. I see so many relationships around me fall apart and I can't help but wish they had what I do. I don't know that this is something to be proud of as much as grateful for. I'll word it this way...I'm proud that I was smart enough to marry him.
Becoming a mother. Being a mother is nothing to sneeze at. Warning! There is a cliche coming. Motherhood is the hardest yet most rewarding job I will ever have. I love being Jared's mom. Being given the opportunity to guide a human being in this world is so incredible. Being a mother makes he want to be a better person. I absolutely love my little buddy!!
Lastly, surviving a tragedy. I don't really want to go into detail on this one, but surviving this it is something I'm proud of. At the onset of this situation we were prepared to get professional help for me if there was a need. I wondered about how this would effect my mental health, my marriage, my relationship with everyone, and my ability to work. It seems as though I made it. Our marriage is stronger than ever and all other aspects of my life have strengthen, the ones that matter anyway. By surviving this, I feel strong and I have a new view of the world and how I fit in it. I'm proud that although I could have curled up in a ball and died (figuratively) I didn't. I allowed this to only strengthen me rather than weaken me.
If you haven't seen the movie The Bucket List or read the book The Last Lecture I do recommend that you do. Time is ticking...