Prior to the deaths of my brother and then my mother my bucket list sat neatly tucked away.
Hidden in a journal or notebook. Quietly gnawing at me around birthdays and New Years holidays. Totally inactive, as if the effort of dreaming up grand ideas and putting them on paper spent any energy required to go further and execute.
My dreams were always trumped by my responsibilities. Oh Yes. I was that girl. Miss Responsible, Miss Efficient, Miss Got It All Figured Out.
Except, I didn’t have shit figured out. Except fear. Fear and I were real good buddies.
Fear kept me from action and execution of my dreams because dreams were unknown territory. Risky. Unknown and unsafe and unstable.
Yet, I couldn’t dare admit that I was afraid. Afraid of failing. Afraid of being poor again. Afraid of not having things that society says we need for a healthy happy successful life. I wholeheartedly bought into the bullshit of “the American Dream”. The house, the cars, the dog, the clothes, the health insurance, the 401K……..blah….blah…fucking blah. I was an excellent little lemming. Never questioning the masses but instead mistrusting my own instinct and desire for an alternative to all the stuff and the should haves and the must haves and the societal images of success. It was a stifling suffocating place to reside. No one put me there but myself.
Now, I am not judging for having and wanting any of those things. In fact, I still have many of those things. And they are nice. But I now recognize that they are just things and not pieces of me. If I lose all of those comfy cushy things I will survive. I will be just fine and whole and worthy. I listen and respect and trust my gut instinct now. I do what makes me and my family healthy and happy without paying heed to the blind masses. I ignore the chant of “more, more, more, more” that is piped into every single aspect of comfortable modern life.
It is not often I can say that a silver lining exists to me losing two of the most important people in my life history and my world. Here is one. One that I would gladly trade to have them back here alive but nonetheless:
Their deaths and lack of living woke me to my own lack of living my dreams and my truths.
Their deaths breathed life and energy and action into my Bucket List.
And now its transformed into my “Bucket- Fuck It, I’m Going For It” List. Also, fondly referred to by myself and my fierce girl tribe as the “Zero Fucks Given” lifestyle mantra.
There is a tremendous amount of freedom and power in living for your own joy and casting off obligations and toxic situations that keep you sick and stuck.
Does my new mantra imply that I am a selfish prick who does whatever I want without care or concern for anyone but myself? Maybe sometimes…..but that could also mean that I do not allow myself to get emotionally dragged into the bullshit inundating daily life. I am not an emotional doormat. I don’t take myself so seriously anymore. I no longer buy into the big lie but will admit I am an active participant (Amazon, Target and Starbucks- I am in deep). I honor myself and my truths. I do not allow other peoples’ opinions of me sway me from living the way I feel is best.
How have I begun living my truths? What actions have I taken as a result of living off of my “Bucket- Fuck It” List?
- Left my career and job that I loved but that was no longer fulfilling. Nor did I have the capacity to be altruistic and healing after my mom died. Realizing and acting on that intuition was extremely difficult. I felt it made me look emotionally weak. I felt very strange about becoming a stay at home mom and not contributing financially to our home. (Told you I was a good little lemming!)
- Lots of new tattoos and a rainbow of hair colors. Prior I felt as a mature mother and wife that I should look and dress a certain way. In fact, I recall once telling my little sister that “I was 30. And thirty year olds don’t wear midriff shirts.” What a presumptuous ass! Newsflash- I now wear whatever the fuck I want!
- Travel, travel, travel! How I love discovering new places and people and food! Travel does not have to be expensive and you can’t take the money with you anyway!
- I do not feel guilty about scheduling and taking regular me time. Self care is imperative to me functioning well in my roles as wife, mom and friend.
- Ban toxic energy and engaging in drama. Still working on this one but awareness is the first step, right?
- Embracing my bad ass ride or die girl tribe. These amazing and wonderful soul sisters enrich my life in countless ways. I am so lucky to have them. They have carried me through this mess of life the last 4 years.
- Trying new things that I always wanted to try but was too scared. Hello “Reinvention is a Mutha” is a real journey unfolding before your very eyes. Next up singing lessons!
- Paying attention to all the beauty in the world every single day. I love to perch on my couch every morning and journal and watch the sunrise and the birds play and my neighbors walking by.
- Trust my ability to be a good partner and mother. I tamed that not worthy, not good at this beast that lived in my head for way too long. Admittedly, I am far from perfect but I know that we are all in the same struggle pretending to have our shit together.
- Action! I do things that scare me. I do what makes me uncomfortable if it’s part of my dream. I allow myself to be vulnerable. Hence, current blog creation.
I am never coming back from my “Zero Fucks Given” lifestyle. I will never shove away my dreams or ideas because “it’s too risky, or I’m too old, or too fat or not rich enough or smart enough” or any of the other million reasons and excuses we give to stay scared and stuck in our comfortable ruts that slowly kill our creative passionate selves.
And whoever doesn’t like my choices, guess what my response will be….guess just how many fucks I give?!