Tonight when I saw this ad for the 20th anniversary of Cirque du Soliel in Vegas, it triggered my fierce desire to see them in action.
Thinking more about this I visited the Bucket List sites on the internet to see what others are dreaming about. Clearly my life has been memorable. I’ve paddled down the Colorado River in the Grand Canyon. I’ve spent weeks camping, hiking and rock climbing all over this country. I’ve walked into the Anasazi cliff dwellings with a guide, swum with dolphins, and Manatees and snorkeled with Leopard Rays.
From the time I was a kid I was a pretty good water skier, an ok downhill skier and one heck of a sledder. I’ve swum and kayaked, and canoed with a team almost daily for 3 years on the Marianas Trench off the coast of Saipan. I’ve been lost in a jungle, and watched my shadow surrounded by a circular rainbow.
I’ve never been to Paris nor to Germany, both on my list, as is South Africa, hiking Kilimanjaro, walking to Santiago, and visiting Ireland and Scotland. I’ve been many places in England, on and off the beaten paths because my daughter lived there for 15 years. I’d like to go to the Sacred Music Festival in Morocco, but I’ve walked the Labyrinth in San Francisco and visited the great cathedrals in New York, Boston and England.
I have wonderful memories. I’ve seen butterflies and dragonflies hatch, and as many as 100 blue butterflies sat on me in a muddy woods one day. I began forty plus hospice programs and family support programs for families who cared for children with very special needs in their homes. I taught psychology and Human Development and how to write a grant proposal. A few years ago I graduated with my doctorate in ministry. That was always high on my list. I’ve birthed 4 children, and was present when one of my grandsons was born at home. I was with my dad as he was dying.
What more could a woman want?
I still haven’t been up in a hot air balloon. I’ve never been on a camel or an elephant. I rode horses, and drove a convertible Porsche Cabriolet for awhile. I’ve seen Northern Lights many times, and sailed the Caribbean and the Great Lakes. I’ve climbed the Statue of Liberty and been to the top of the Empire State Building.
I’ve been deeply involved in politics. In my brainy political days as a lobbyist I helped write some of the first legislation in the country about medical treatment decision acts and the first legislation to license hospice programs. I attended press conferences in the White House. I cried at the Viet Nam War Memorial and drank scotch with friends at a soon to be famous restaurant after.
A few months ago, when a doctor asked if I have a Living Will I seriously wondered would I want to be resuscitated if I had sudden cardiac arrest. I answered no.
More recently I know that I want to see my 3 year-old grandson graduate from high school. I want to know what my older grandkids are and will be doing with their one wild and wonderful lives.
What will I do with my time in between now and then? Have a pacemaker installed to keep me ticking. Learn to use more than “auto” on my camera. Foster some dogs and help out at the food bank. Finish the quilt I started for my goddaughter’s wedding present. Pray, play and laugh a lot. That’s my plan.
By Ko Un Ko Un
Ko Un, “Keumgang-Gul / Diamond Cave,” translated by Sunny Jung and Hillel Schwartz, from Abiding Places. Copyright © 2006 by Ko Un. Reprinted by permission of Tupelo Press.