On Death & 100 Things To Do Before I Die
Hi guys. I know that this blog is about personal finance and getting out of debt, but this is also a personal blog…my blog, and my journey through life. I firmly believe in teaching through stories and laughter. If you’ve followed this blog for more than a month or so, you have probably realized that my writing style is a bit light-hearted with a lesson tossed in there somewhere for good measure. But, life isn’t always fun and light-hearted, so this blog will occasionally reflect that too.
I struggle quite a bit with just how much personal information to include here, especially since I share the stories of the people in my life. I share these stories so that we can all hopefully learn something and improve on our own lives.
One of my cousins passed away on Sunday after a battle with cancer. At barely 33 years old, she is the first of my generation to die. Realizing how ephemeral life can be is very sobering, especially when you consider yourself to be young.
This post isn’t so much about my cousin as it is about focusing on life – our lives – and living life as if you would die tomorrow. I realize that over the past year, my cousin very quietly lived her life that way. She continued to live her life to the fullest every single day: she got married, moved into a nice apartment, bought a car, worked hard at a job that she loved and spent time with the people that she cared for. All the time, she let no one, except her very best friend, know how sick she was getting.
I’ve been thinking a lot about life in general for the past 1.5 years. After pussyfooting around for two years about leaving my former employer, I only solidified my resolve to leave after a close coworker passed away. I realized then that none of us were guaranteed time, and if I died tomorrow, I would not have been living the life that I wanted to live. This was really reinforced after my serious car accident a few months ago.
It was then that the seeds of independence and the thought of retiring by 40 was really planted in my brain. I’ve never, ever wanted to work for someone else, but what was I doing to work towards my personal employment freedom? At the time? Nothing. Instead I accepted employment with my current employer in a field that I thought would be a good fit for my personality. While my position is great, I know that my current employer is not and in two months, exactly one year after accepting this position, I plan on being gone. Life, my friends, is too short to be miserable for 10 hours of the day for five days each week.
Death itself doesn’t scare me. It’s part of the process of life since every single one of us will die. This sentiment that death is a part of the living process and that we must make room for the people who are to come was a gift given to me by my very wise grandmother after a young schoolmate died while I was in junior high school. While I don’t fear death, I am woefully fearful of dying without having lived. I mean having really lived.
There is so much that I want to do before I die. Little things. Big things. Things that mean nothing to no one else but me. After all, this is my life. When the end of my time approaches, I want to have done more than worked at some job that I hated and made my tenants miserable.
I’ve made a half-hearted attempt at a bucket list almost three years ago, but even calling it a bucket list is sprucing up what I really mean to call it. I want to say that this is a “shit-that-I-want-to-do-before-I-die” list, ’cause honestly, checking things off off a list is so much easier than trying to remember it.
Here is my second attempt at such a list. I’m not going to over think it. The goal is to LIVE and HAVE FUN. That’s it. Nothing more, nothing less.
I called this post 100 things, but there’s obviously not 100 things on this list. The listed items are in no particular order and I plan on adding as I go along. Hopefully I will make it to 100 before my time is up. If you see this post pop back up to the front page, it’s because I’ve added to this list or completed something on the list.
Have you got 100 things that you too would like to accomplish?
- Love my job
- Learn to swim
- Develop a relationship with my father
- Quit working for someone else.
- Get to know my half-siblings
- Be fluent in another language
- Have s successful business
- Have my outside match my inside
- Build a functional aquaponics system
- Get that Brazilian done.
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