Starting Over: A New Bucket List for a New Day Dawning

Starting Over:  A New Bucket List for a New Day Dawning

On 21 May 2016, I will be completing the last thing on my Bucket List by running the Great Wall of China Marathon.  Five years ago, my life looked much different and many of my dreams were in progress or loomed large.  When Phil’s life ended and I could not find joy in anything and while the weekends and holidays caused only gut wrenching pain, I looked at the Bucket List I had created 9 years before.  That Bucket List became my way forward even when….even when there was no joy.  Even when looking ahead caused me enough pain to want to check out.  I simply could not give the assassin my hopes, dreams, or my life, too.  I chose to fight for life by pursuing every dream I had on that list, but five years later that list is one event from completion.  My life is not over and I am choosing to pursue thriving versus surviving.

To thrive, there has to be something to be excited about, look forward to, and something to pursue.  To thrive means looks ahead and dreaming beyond the life I had with Phil.  It is trusting myself that there is life left to live.  As I check off the last dream of my youth, I have spent time pondering and developing the plan—the second Bucket List.  My dreams are simpler for the most part, but no less of a dream.  While I may never complete this list, it isn’t about completion, but it is about pushing myself outside of my comfort zone to be happy, independent, and hopeful for every one of my days.

Starting Over:  A New Bucket List for a New Day Dawning


  1. The Festival of Lights/Lanterns in CO


  1. Take a weekend white water rafting trip



  1. Jump out of a plane and live to tell about it


  1. Find a chapter 2 –while I once got physically ill even considering this, I do recognize that I miss loving someone, being loved, and creating a life with someone. Where once it was impossible, I now recognize possibility.



  1. Write another book that tells more than my story. I want this book to tell our story and to weave in the research so that it can be used in a classroom.


  1. Run the Dublin Marathon and one in the Avignon region of France



  1. To sleep in one of those huts in Tahiti travel magazines


  1. Mediterranean  Cruise



  1.  See the Aurora Borealis—I want to see those Northern lights!
  2.  Have a house with a porch and a rocking chair


  1.  See Bruce Springsteen in concert


  1.  Run an ultra marathon


  1.  Have a tulip bed with blood red, white, and pink tulips only outside of my house


  1.  Take a horse drawn carriage ride


  1. Ride the Stratosville Rollercoaster in Las Vegas


  1. Share Venice and a gondola ride with someone I love. Yes, I know the water is really putrid and has sewage in it, but I want to go to Carnival and I want to wear the mask and take the gondola ride at night. I want to be serenaded under the stars.  Yeah, yeah, apparently I am turning into a romantic.


  1.  Get a dog again—a small dog named stinkerbelle would make my heart happy.


  1. Have all of my children married or happy with someone.


  1. Stay in a mountain cabin for a week with no electronics


  1. Snorkel/scuba dive the Great Coral Reef


  1.  Retire


  1.  See the warrior statues in China (and that isn’t happening in May)


  1.  Make a difference in someone’s life


  1.  Run the London Marathon with someone


  1. Learn to make a good key lime pie, Greek  food, risotto, polenta, and tamales.


  1.  Jet ski-I love water and I have never done jet skiing.


  1.  Learn to ball room dance and dance in the arms of someone I love


  1.  Complete another triathlon


  1.  Watch Boise State and USAFA play


  1.  Visit and explore Philadelphia, Chicago, Sante Fe, Montreal, Victoria, and Leavenworth  (WA)


  1. Fly fish once-I did this as a little girl with my dad. I wasn’t patient enough.  I would like to try it one more time.


  1. Go to a concert at Red Rocks in CO


  1. Make another house a home


  1. Be the reason someone is excited about the future


  1. Canoe trip complete with s’mores, cowboy/hobo dinner, and a cabin. I would say tent, but my body might not work afterwards.


These 35 things will take a long time to complete—if ever.  I can’t see how some of these things can happen, but it doesn’t matter.  It is another page in the way ahead.  I would like to think that I will live into my 90’s, but to do that, I need to really LIVE, thrive, and dream.  China is about finishing my hopes and dreams of the past and starting the hopes and dreams of what next– a full life lived with every ounce of my heart, soul, and body.


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