The Bucket List
When I was given 3-6 months maximum to live in January, 2015 from stage 4 Appendix Cancer (It's been 10 months and counting...), I started seriously pondering this concept of "Bucket Lists." Most of what I came up with was pretty simple actually...a trip to the beach for a weekend with girlfriends, a magical day at Disneyland complete with a stay at the Disneyland Hotel, dinner at the Four Seasons in Santa Barbara, a board game birthday party, as well as some unexpected surprises such as a Groundlings improv show held in my benefit which ended up being one of the best nights of my life. And even though each experience was such a blessing, this pressure to really LIVE like I meant it came over me big time. I started thinking up some extravagant plans that would actually be way more stressful to accomplish than the amount of energy I had available at that time warranted. Recently, I started thinking about Bucket Lists differently. My focus has started to shift from what I WANT to what I can GIVE. I have this insatiable desire to give something meaningful to the world rather than to get something. Which brings me to a very exciting project I have started which I will write about next time. I love the idea of what you will leave behind in your proverbial LIFE bucket after you leave this mortal plane as a more satisfying definition of a Bucket List. Tonight, I had dinner with friends and as I sat there, I thought to myself this night was on my Bucket List and I didn't even know it. It was a beautiful night of sharing intimate life details and enjoying delicious Vietnamese soup. One of my best friends there tonight just got engaged. The other is starting an exciting new webseries. At the same time, one friend is possibly leaving their job soon, and the other friend's dog is dying of cancer (which got me onto the subject of Bucket Lists for animals which is a very interesting conversation we may have to have in a future post...) And I started to realize that all these "ups and downs" all exist simultaneously and that's the beauty of life. As Will Young says in one of my favorite songs "All Time Love," "If everything was smooth sailing, well then what would there be left to exalt?" Some of the most beautiful moments I've experienced over the past 10 months have been BECAUSE they existed in the midst of a storm. So who knows how my Bucket List will unfold moving forward. All I know is I am so grateful for every single moment and every gift of Love I can leave behind in this world. And just like a lily pad, I will try to be perfectly content in muddy waters--not anticipating the next moment, and completely unafraid of the unknown.