Back of the Queue — Is there something you’ve always wanted to do, but never got around to starting (an activity, a hobby, or anything else, really)? Tell us about it — and tell us about what’s keeping you from doing it.
I’m totally sure there’s something I planned — intended — to do with my life and didn’t get around to it. The problem is, I can’t remember what that was.
Did I plan to get famous, write the great American novel? Yeah, that was one thing but you’ll have to forgive me. I think when this was my dream, I was 10, maybe 11. It didn’t even survive into my high school years. I can’t clearly remember If I had anything specific in mine or how I intended to reach my goal. It was a long time ago.
When I was even younger, I wanted to be the Lone Ranger. Except the job was already taken. I didn’t have a horse, and (minor detail) I was (am) a girl. The details of this “plan” elude me now. I just remember the vague outline. Maybe this plan was never more than a vague outline. I was so young and it was a long time ago.
I was going to travel the world, live in another country, get absorbed in a different culture. Wait … I did that, didn’t I? I remember. A bit fuzzy, but these memories linger long.
I was going to be a working writer. A journalist. Run a newspaper, cover issues and events. Interview important people and see my byline on the front page. It’s coming back to me. I did that, though it was in another country and almost 30 years ago. I’m sure I enjoyed it a great deal, but time has softened the edges. Life does that. I may not remember every detail, but I know it was a great time.
So I’m looking back and I think I lived the life I wanted including pretty much all the stuff I wanted to do. It didn’t always work out exactly as expected, but that’s life. Man plans, God laughs.
Add another old saying: “Too soon old, too late smart.” If I could do it all over again … and believe me, I don’t want to do it again … I’d fine tune my plans a bit and maybe have a more profitable outcome. Because I had a good time. Even the bad times were good. I had fun. I laughed. I worked hard doing things I thought were worth doing. Some of my worst paying jobs were the most fun of all.
So maybe I wouldn’t do it differently after all. Because changing anything might ruin the experiences. The old butterfly effect, you know?
I can’t remember the details anyway, so this is my story. I’m sticking to it.
In real life, you have only two choices. They are fundamental, irrevocable, etched in stone.
You can die young … or you can grow old.
How you grow old — gracefully, grumpily, in good or poor health — isn’t up to you. But these are the only choices. I didn’t die young, so here I am. And I can’t remember a lot of detail, but I remember fun.
Laughter stays with you. I highly recommend not spending a lot of time grieving over what you missed and more time laughing with people you love.