My bucket list is taking shape. Like I said last week, I’m all about new experiences, and the bucket list reflects that:
- Have coffee beneath the Eiffel Tower
- Spend a night in a castle
- See the English countryside
- Live in the English country side for a few months
- Spend a night in a super luxury hotel
- Go indoor sky diving
- See a moose in their natural habit
- Fly to New York City for the day (I know, I could drive, but I want to do the whole jet-setter business person thing)
- See the desert
- Win a RITA
- Make the Bestsellers’ List
- Learn how to make a proper cappuccino (with pretty foam)
As I write the list, I realize that this whole new experiences/bucket list quest is really about staying interesting. One of my biggest fears – perhaps my biggest actually – is the fear of becoming irrelevant to my family. After so many years of being a caregiver, I’m afraid my son, Tattoo won’t see me as anything more.
This isn’t a frivolous fear. I have watched my own mother, through anxiety, depression and fear, shrink her world to such minuscule proportions, that she has no life at all short of waiting to die. What frightens me is that this winter break, I saw how easily I slipped back into servitude mode. Life very quickly became about my family. What groceries did they want? Were they going to be home for dinner? Did Tattoo need my attention? When Tattoo went back to college the other day, the void he left behind shook me to the core. It made me realize that I need to be more.
Friends will point out that I am more – that I have a career that I am working quite hard at building. They are right. I am more than a caregiver. But there’s a problem attached to my career. It’s still based in my living room. Hell, my whole life takes place in my living room. It’s very difficult to break out of caregiver mode when there’s a pile of laundry ten feet away.
Plus, let’s face it – while my career is interesting to me, it shouldn’t define me any more than being a caregiver. Thus, the need for experiences. The more I push myself to try new things and to go to new places. I refuse to let my world shrink to these four walls.
To celebrate my decision, I booked a trip to San Antonio for the RWA National Conference (#RWA14). Okay, so it’s business related. That’s okay, because while I’m in San Antonio, I can have experiences. I hope to have many.