Reverse Bucket List: Use Your Past to Pave Your Future

Most people have some kind of a “Bucket List.”  For some, like myself, a rough list of ideas, subject to change, is sufficient.  I’ve never been discouraged by missing checked boxes before approaching milestone birthdays.  That may change as I age.

I have ideas of things I’d like to do, but as life changes, so do my priorities.  If we’ve missed visiting a country as a childless couple, we will make up for it as a family or later in life when we start traveling alone.  That kind of thing.

I’m more than halfway through my pregnancy and life is about to take some major turns.  We are ready!  It helps that we feel we have shared some really great adventures along the way.  When making a bucket list, it’s important to take note of the road travelled before planning ahead.  Sure there are things that I could dwell on that I’m going to wish I did before I had kids and maybe I will do that during moments of weakness.  When you get down to it, my life has been pretty amazing and keeping a reverse bucket list is incredibly valuable.  Reverse bucket lists are a running tab of all your momentous experiences.  Not only does this help to celebrate the past, it also reminds us that the future is attainable.

I want to share with you some of the adventures I’ve had along the way.  Some I consider adventures because it was an amazing experience, some because making it through was truly triumphant and some were just plain strange; but nevertheless it is the road I travelled.

Reverse Bucket List: Use your past to pave your future.
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Reverse Bucket List

  1.   Trade a stranger a hug for a sandwich.  The world didn’t always take credit and running out of cash was a different story back then.
  2.   Be good looking enough to pass out hugs as currency.
  3.   Get paid to write.  You’re reading it.
  4.   Try a crazy sport.  I once was a pretty good pole vaulter.
  5.   Foot race a professional athlete.  I am terrible with names and faces, so I can’t even remember the NFL player I raced.
  6.   Save a life.  Chest compressions will always be a cringe worthy feeling.
  7.   Start a business.  The Luxicon may be small now, but it’s going places.
  8.   Pay my way through college.  And at a 3.98 gpa I might add.
  9.   Try a profession completely outside my comfort zone.  Blogging, mystery dinner theatre actress, and Wedding DJ are the top three that come to mind.
  10.   Rescue an animal.  3 and counting.
  11.   Survive a near drowning experience.
  12.   Travel the world.  Check: India, Mexico, Canada, Italy, France, England, St. Lucia, Grand Cayman and Cuba.
  13.   Reach and maintain my ideal weight.  I’ve done it before and I can do it again after this baby!
  14.   Make a difference in someone’s life.
  15.   Make a difference to a stranger.
  16.   Beat pain.  I have a painful disease, so chronic pain is  and will always be an issue.  Having climbed that mountain in the past makes me sure I can handle the future.
  17.   Make a human.  He’s still baking, but it counts.
  18.   Experience the presence of a ghost.  Still don’t believe it, but I can’t explain it either.
  19.   Stand up to a bully.  It’s ridiculous that adults still bully each other, but at this point in my life, I’m not prepared to take it.
  20.   Learn a craft.  Sewing is absolutely cathartic to me.
  21.   Learn another language.  Still learning, but I’m determined our children will be bilingual.
  22.   Ride an elephant.
  23.   Buy a new car.
  24.   Star in an Independent film.  It was a terrible film and I’m thankful you can’t find it on the internet.
  25.   Overcome social anxiety.  There are still circumstances I don’t like, usually loud situations because my hearing is bad, so I can’t enjoy conversation, but for the most part, I’m good.
  26.   Learn to draw and paint.  Never thought I would enjoy portrait work or that I would even be half-way decent at anything that artistic.  You can see some of my work.  Keep in mind, I’m still an amateur.
  27.   Be my own best friend.  Why is learning to be kind to one’s self is such a difficult hurdle?
  28.   Be a ‘ride or die’ best friend to someone else.
  29.   Become cool.  I have no idea how or when that happened, but I’ll take it.
  30.   Be in love.
  31.   Break someone’s heart.
  32.   Start over.
  33.   Move somewhere new.
  34.   Be so close to someone that they feel like an appendage.
  35.   Witness childbirth.  It was an 11 lb C-section.  As I prepare for my first child, I kind of wish I’d witnessed something a little less traumatic in nursing school.
  36.   Be a mentor.
  37.   Ask a guy out.
  38.   Do yoga on top of a mountain.
  39.   Parasail.
  40.   Ride a horse on a beach.
  41.   Do a back flip.
  42.   Design and make a wedding dress.
  43.   Take a chance on a dream.
  44.   Snorkel in the ocean.
  45.   Do the right thing even when it feels worse than death.
  46.   Make bad choices.  There are certain number of learning experiences necessary to grow up.
  47.   Meet “the one” and be smart enough to see it.
  48.   Dye my hair a color completely out of character for me.
  49.   Find my spiritual center.
  50.   Know my purpose in life.

There are still so many experiences left to collect.  Peeking into my past reminds me how far I’ve come in such a short amount of time.   Not only do I feel fully charged to tackle my bucket list, I have new ideas inspired by my past.  What’s on your reverse bucket list?  Your turn!  Comment below.


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Kate Thakkar

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