A co-worker once told me she had a policy against the future tense. She said she never tells anyone what she intends to do. Her motto was one of all action and no talk. Since then, I have tried to do the same and found that it takes a great deal of willpower. It is just so easy to spew out whatever pops into your head. “I am going to do this and this, and it is going to be awesome.” It is very difficult to keep those thoughts to yourself, and just mentally tell people, “Wait til you see what I am getting ready to unleash on the world.”
Whether you say it out loud or tell it to yourself, the trick at that point is to hold yourself accountable. At the age of 39, I started what most people call a “bucket list”, but I called a TDBID (to do before I die). It was filled with adventures like learning to ride a motorcycle, driving a racecar, jumping out of a plane. I did not want to tell people about the list, unless it was after one of the adventures was completed.
The TDBID morphed into a general point-of-view: I just forced myself to be open to adventures that crossed my path. The most magnaminous of these was Dancing with the Stars (the local version, for charity). The Alzheimer’s Association asked me to be a dancer, and I had never heard of anything more frightening in my life. Here I was, a relatively subdued personality with a twinge of shyness, going to perform a dance routine in front of a packed auditorium. In addition to stage fright, I was out of shape and had never danced before.
This overwhelming, all-consuming adventure is what started my need to write. It helped me to verbalize the process-the fitness challenge, the crazy dance moves, the panic attacks. In this blog you can read about the experiences that came from the Dancing Stars adventure, as well as other endeavors I chose to unleash upon the world.