This isn't a maudlin exercise. It is just a simple calculation. For whatever reason, I have thought for some time that I will probably live to the age of 80. I might change my mind in my late 70s, but for now, 80 seems about right. If that turns out to be the case, it means that I have 18 years left to live.
So now the question is, how do I want to spend those 18 years?This has been a dilemma for me lately. I don't feel inspired to make a "bucket list" of things I want to do before I die. I have, in fact, done pretty much everything I set out to do, plus a few things I never dreamed I would. I don't feel like I have unfinished business. And yet, I don't want to just drift aimlessly across the finish line. I want these 18 years to mean something.
When I look back on my life, I see that most of it has been about "doing" something:
- Becoming educated
- Building careers
- Raising a family
- Starting businesses
- Rehabbing houses
- Renovating gardens
- Working, working, working
And so I want the next 18 years to be about "being" something:
- Being engaged.
- Being useful.
- Being curious.
- Being happy.
- Being generous.
- Being willing to be willing to consider new ideas.
- Being loving, and thus, being loved.
This feels like a graceful and purposeful approach to the grand finale of this lifetime. As I wrote this post, I could feel myself relaxing into it.
Now I'm ready for some birthday cake.