May 19th, 2015 by Jan

I put this list together for the first time in 1996. Since then, every year around my birthday, I review it, and change it if necessary, then post it.

Today is my last day in my 5th decade. I turn 60 tomorrow. At times that totally freaks me out, but for the most part I say bring it! A lot on the outside has changed this year, we have a new house, new community, and new view. On the inside, not much is different. I am comfortable in my own skin, I hang around those who love and celebrate me, and I try my best to let those I love, know it.

As I take stock this year, it is clear to me that…this list is not as important as it used to be.

I still have a great life because:
1. I am married to Ken Parker who continues to make me laugh. And even though he says that I never took to the leash, I am happily tethered to him. (This is my constant truth and has been first since I began this list.)
2. I can say that all the critical parts of my body are intact and healthy.
3. Friends are coming to visit us and help celebrate my 60th birthday and we are going touring in a seaplane!
4. It only took three months in our new home to have someone shout with glee when we met.
5. I am a Canadian and a US Citizen. This is a good thing.
6. I haven’t had a drink since August of 1984. My life is better for it.
7. I am not cold or hungry — and I have enough to share.
8. We chose not to have children.
9. I can spend time on this.

A short list of things I’ve learned: 

1. An education is an education, no matter how you get it.
2. Courage, intelligence and love are never out of place.
3. Tis better to error on the side of generosity.
 (yes, I wrote Tis)
4. A personal practice is personal and changes.
5. I cry and miss them when they are gone.
6. Too many are gone.
7. Some times I’m very inappropriate.
8. AA is a spiritual program and I lost interest.
9. Fuck Cancer. (Just had to say it)
10. The lid needs to be on tight before you shake. (Big lesson here)

I am surprised by:

1. How much I like to talk about money, death and poop.
2. How easy it was to give up my search for god.
3. How much of this letter hasn’t changed over the years.
4. How many loved ones have died.
5. How hard it is to cook a meal.
6. Things that once were big deals and now not.
7. Ken’s humour and how he can make me laugh daily.
8. How little Tai Chi I practice.
9. How little this list changes.

I’m so glad to have:

1. The ability to spend my day how I want to.
2. The same best friend for 38 years.
3. A lot of good friends, really good friends.
5. Walking poles and a fitbit.
6. A house with a view.
7. Facebook contests.
8. An orange cat named Peet.
9. The ability to say yes or no.
10. A vegetable garden.

I’ve finally let go of:
Nothing. I seem to hold tight… not so much to stuff, but to ideas and expectations.

I’d still like to:

1. Read, read, read.
2. Drive across Canada with Ken.
3. See a giraffe in the wild.
4. Go on a super long walk.
5. Sit at the table.
6. Take a writing class.
7. Have a visit from Jim and heather.

And finally:
Until I can master the wisdom of Rob Brezsny I will continue strive to:
1. Cultivate Relaxed Alertness
2. Express Casual Perfection
3. Fill myself with Diligent Indifference
4. Practice Serene Debauchery.

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