Like any proper dreamer, I put down my life’s “must-dos” on paper in my twenties. The list hit the highlights: gotta travel, make art, eat food and guzzle wine. Not only were these things I genuinely wanted to accomplish, I also viewed them as a road map to the person I wanted to become.
Surely, I thought back then, the thirty-something Liz would speak fluent Italian while writing for a health magazine on a Mexican beach (why I chose to speak Italian while living in Mexico is anybody’s guess).
Instead, I write blogs and children’s books in a crumbling basement. I’m surrounded by writing manuals and bills, colorful toddler toys and piles of laundry. I listen to my son pound blocks on the floor as I sip green tea and pray that its caffeine gives me enough energy to counterbalance middle-of-the-night feedings and early wake-ups.
Every once in awhile, the pounding stops and I get up from the computer to peer over the child’s gate. He’s still alive and examining something. His mouth is free from random debris, and he’s not tugging on any electrical cords. He sees me and we play peek-a-boo. I run over and chase him around the sofa. He giggles.
It’s about as far away from lapping waves and a temperate climate as I can possibly imagine, and yet, it’s the only place I want to be.
(completed items are in bold)
Write a book
Travel to Ireland, Italy and Greece
Get my nose pierced
Get published in a health magazine
Live on a beach in Mexico
Learn to play the drums
Learn proper photography
Paint a picture good enough to hang on a wall
Fall in love
Go to San Francisco, Corpus Christi, Maine and Oregon
Check out Hell’s Kitchen and Chinatown
Make a few of my own clothes
Tour the wine country and learn about wine tasting
Kiss a cowboy
Ride a motorcycle and do a wheelie (for those of you who know me and my family, I don’t think this one is gonna happen).
Grow a vegetable garden
Learn how to cook like a chef
Squish sand in my toes on a Hawaiian beach