In the first year I had multiple goals: to learn to teach English as a second language; to participate in a build for Habitat for Humanity; and to take a course in basic mediation. I did all those things. In the second year I clarified my values and made a list of of my priorities for each day: spirituality, health, community, curiosity, and purpose. On most days, I honored those priorities.
So far, so good. I've published a book, experienced my 15 minutes of fame as a representative of sorts for Road Scholar and Habitat for Humanity, and am well past midway to becoming a certified mediator. And we've taken 23 trips in the last 24 months.
That all sounds exhausting!
So what's on the horizon for Year Three?
Mostly I have no idea. I am still sure that my values-based priorities are valid for me. But I am aware that my body isn't getting any younger. Many activities advertised in the Seattle paper don't sound worth the effort to get in the car, brave the traffic and find a parking place. I'm thinking about logging on to the three senior centers nearby and seeing what kinds of outings they're willing to drive us to. Maybe a play downtown, where all I have to do is hand over my ticket and walk into the theater? I'm considering hiring a grandchild to weed the garden. My younger neighbor already mows our side lawn along with his own. Gads!
It could be, though, that I'm thinking and feeling this way because I'm entering Week 5 as the Minion to the Man with the New Knee. I'm doing most of the chores he usually takes care of which, of course, I've taken for granted for years. And I'm thinking that as we get older - and he is, after all, five years older than me - we'll be less and less inclined to take care of all this stuff ourselves. Or maybe less able. Or some combination of the two. A big yard with a garden is a thing of beauty and all that, but it's a lot of work. I'm not alone yet, but I may well be at some point in the future. I need to be thinking about what's next - not how many things can I cram into the time now, but how to gracefully handle the events of living when things aren't so good as they are right now. How I'd manage on my own, if it came to that. I do want to live in the moment, but keeping an eye out for the future is also a good idea.
In the meantime, I keep up with my exercise. I'm eating well. I read. Yesterday I made a reservation for a park model at a resort in Tucson for next January and February. I never ever thought we would be snowbirds, but we seem to be drifting in that direction. Sun is a good thing in the winter, I've decided.
And the sun is finally out in Washington State!