Hi, I'm Megan, and I'm determined to live my life before it's over.
So I decided to try completing my bucket list in a week.
I've kept bucket lists since I was 13 or so, always thinking of what I wanted to accomplish before it was too late.
I realized if I didn't do what I wanted with my life, I would never get another chance. Fear of failure and mediocrity no longer seemed like good enough excuses to put off my life. It was time to get down to business.
1. Learn to skateboard
2. Write a children's novel
3. Get a tattoo
4. Tell my parents how much I love them
6. Play with monkeys
I was ready.
First up was skateboarding.
This was a newer fantasy of mine after binge-watching videos of adult-people and kid-people successfully controlling skateboards. I'd always been afraid to really go for it since I never felt stable (the four times I'd tried) hopping on a board before.
But I knew I wanted to do it before I died, so I dove in (tentatively).
My goal for the day was to be able to ride from work to the Arclight (around six blocks away).
We covered standing, balancing, pushing, turning, and eventually tried skating up a slightly lipped curb (that part did not go well for me).
After skating from 9 AM until 5 PM, it was time for the final test. I was nervous, but the bottom line was: I was going to make it to the Arclight regardless of if it was graceful or not.
DAY 2. Writing a children's novel.
I'd always wanted to write a book, but the few times I'd begun writing, I lost inspiration after the first page. For fear of it not being good enough, I cut myself off before giving myself a chance. But not this time! This time was for real, so I decided on a message, a main character, and got to doodling.
I named the book Rita Rabbit and the Invisible Injury. It's a book about depression!
Day 2 was over, and Day 3 was upon me. It was time to get a tattoo.
Body Electric Tattoo in Hollywood was the spot. My friend, Mallery, came along for support, since she has several tattoos, and is also the source of inspo for my tattoo.
A bit over a year ago I was sitting at her kitchen table contemplating leaps I wanted to take in my career, fearful of the fall and unsure of if I was capable. She simply told me, "lean in."
She encouraged me to lean into the fear and insecurity, because when you really want something, it's normally worth taking the risk.
TIME TO TAT.
After four minutes, it was done.
DAY 4! Day four was full of feelings. This was the day I told my parents how much I love them.
I drove to their house, sat them down at our kitchen table, and laid it out for them.
I'd had several friend's whose parents recently died, seemingly out of no where, and naturally, there's a fair amount of "I wish I could tell them I love them, one last time."
My Dad laughed and said, "So... this is.... my death speech??"
Anyways it was all real heartfelt and nice.
DAY 5= SKYDIVING!!!
I was jazzed. Mom insisted she come with me to GoJump Oceanside.
It was a beautiful, clear day, and I had just spent the night binge-watching skydiving videos. I was sufficiently freaked out.
Now what they don't tell you before they jump, is that you're falling at 120 mph. I'm glad I didn't know that beforehand.
I got strapped up, debriefed on proper body position pre and post parachute, and we were last to load up into the plane.
Which means first to jump...
The thing is, nothing can prepare you for the feeling of free-falling through the sky.
Safely planted on the ground, I felt almost even more overwhelmed than when I was in the sky!
It was on the ground that I relived my journey for my Mom and the cameras. It was hard to comprehend all that had happened.
I knew I was happy, I knew the wind scrambled my brain, and I knew I didn't want to do it again for at least a year or two.
With skydiving in my back pocket, I embarked on the final day: Play. With. MONKEYS!!
Interacting with the monkeys is a fun experience, as long as you keep in mind that contact is fully on their terms.
Stacy, the Director of Animal Tracks, pointed out that I wouldn't like it very much if I were put on a leash and grabbed and pet by strangers. They don't like that either, so I was encouraged to wear shiny, sparkly objects, and they would be drawn to me.
I ended the day with Chrissy the baboon laying across my lap.
The week was over, and so was the bucket list.
Through completing this bucket list, I reminded that it's never too late (or too early!) to live your life.
I feel like it's so easy to shrug off your inner most dreams and goals. I remember my thought cycle always being, "It's scary. I'm not good enough. There's no time. I'm not ready." But there is no "ready." There's never a perfect time; all you have is right now.
Reincarnation and life-after-death aside- We've only got one life to life, and one chance to do what we want.
Go learn that new language you've been putting off. Connect with the people you feel drawn to. Put yourself out there. You don't get another chance when it's all over, so do it NOW, PEOPLE.
Sit down, make a real, truthful list of the things you want to do before it's too late, and take steps to do them. I believe in you.