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In yesterday’s post, A Bucket of Inspiration, I shared the video and story of Alice, a 15 year old with terminal cancer.  At her mom’s suggestion, Alice wrote up a bucket list of things she dreams of doing in the time she has left.

The concept of a bucket list isn’t new.  It was around long before Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman traveled around the world having unique experiences and searching for what truly matters.  Though they jet first class to exotic lands, the two things that stood out to me were:

  1. the items on the list that were the most simple, such as “make a stranger laugh” were often the most touching moments
  2. the two characters in the story actually crossed things off the list

The point of a bucket list isn’t just to keep writing things down.  The point is to find a way, even in the face of challenges, to create those moments and cross things off the damn list.

My late husband and I had a dream of one day doing a first class three month Europe trip.  We knew we would have to save for a long time and that it was something we wouldn’t be doing anytime soon.

When his second round of treatment failed, I decided perhaps we couldn’t afford to wait.  So much of our money was going to medical expenses that spending $10,000.00 on a trip was out of the question.  But we had airmiles from all of Gary’s work travel.  And by going in late May, slightly off season, and focusing on England and Scotland, I was able to put together an itinerary for next to nothing.

Three weeks later we were on a plane making a dream come true.  It wasn’t our grand vision but cancer teaches you to prioritize and what mattered wasn’t sitting in first class.

What mattered was walking through Westminster Abbey and lighting a candle at the alter in memory of my mother.  What mattered was sitting in a darkened theater enjoying incredible performances.  What mattered was uncovering amazing book finds together on Chancery Road and enjoying spicy Indian food three nights in a row because we loved it.

Had we held out for the big ticket trip with all the bells and whistles, we would have missed out on so many wonderful moments together…all tucked safely away in my memory book now.  The point of a bucket list is to cross things off.

Check back in for my next blog post on 5 tips to help you just do it!


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