Your next 5 years
Aunty subscribes to over 40 websites for daily email updates and newsletters. These vary from healthy cooking, beading, real estate, retirement planning, etc. The majority of Aunty’s subscriptions focus on financial gurus letting subscribers know what they THINK may happen based on current and past factors.
Most of them are gloom and doomers. The economy will collapse, we are in a bubble, sell everything and move to another country, get ready for the survival of the fittest, etc.
Some are believers in getting into the stock market for the long haul – buy now and hold forever, just make sure that you only buy top quality stocks. Some believe in buying real estate. Some believe in buying and storing away gold. Some are absolutely sure about bitcoin.
Who is right? Probably every one of them. The trouble is, we don’t know what will come first or happen until it happens. So we plod on, hoping for the best, planning as best we can, or choose to just keep doing what we always do.
The post it note
Aunty has a little post it note on her laptop. It asks, “What would I do if I only had a week/a month/ a year/5 years/ a life left to live?” Then, it asks, “How can I design my routine this week to align with these answers?” Allow 10 minutes per answer.
This post it note has been staring at Aunty for over a year, each time the laptop was opened. It requires 50 minutes of sit down and write answers, so Aunty would look at the note, and then ignore it as emails were checked, Drama Fever shows were watched, games were played, or checking things out on the amazing world wide web.
A break in time
After Aunty broke her arm, it was really quite nice. All chores, commitments, and activities stopped. Friends and family brought food, became chauffeurs, and Aunty had an excellent excuse to not have to get up and fetch things or clean up. Daughter #1 became a very capable and caring housemaid/cook/nurse aide. Aunty would play HOURS of Candy Crush Saga with her right hand or watch Korean dramas nonstop without feeling any remorse of wasting time. Ha Ha! That was fun.
Aunty’s 5 years
Even while wasting time, that post it note kept asking, “What would I do if I only had a week/ a month/ a year/ 5 years/ a life time left to live?”
So for now, Aunty has thought about the 5 year time line. If Aunty only had 5 years left to live. Hmmm. For starters, Aunty wants to be in excellent health – no aches, pains, disease. Vibrant independent living. Active in thinking capacity (no Alzheimers for Aunty!), financially set up for life, having a clutter free home (via the Mari Kondo Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up), a joyful garden, 2 chickens to lay fresh eggs, an understanding with the children about who gets what and how, and having freedom of time and space to create and create with all the beads, fabrics, and supplies collected over the years.
Planning for the near and far future means doing things rather than putting them off. The end will be our memorial service.
A funeral picture
Aunty thoroughly enjoyed a Korean drama movie, Miss Granny. She was a crotchety bitter old woman who had a hard life. She went to a photo shop to have her funeral picture taken. In Korea, during the memorial service, the deceased’s picture is framed and set in a horizontal flower wreath. Rather formal, usually flattering, plain backdrop, headshot. Something like a passport photo, but better because it is flattering by choice.
So, Aunty reached out to her favorite photo blogger, Jalna, to take her funeral picture next week. Friends have been invited, but Aunty’s friends think she is weird so no takers – yet.
This will also be a time for pictures for Aunty’s new website design (taking forever but it shall be happening). Jalna’s work place and photographer friend Leslie (check out her unreal Africa photo trip) will be coming to help, so already it shall be a fun day.
Having a funeral picture and updating HonoluluAunty.com is part of Aunty’s 5 year plan.
Choose YOUR what if and work on it
“What would you do if you only had a week/ a month/ a year/ 5 years/etc. left to live?”
Aunty probably has at least 20 years left and has been mulling over how she wants her life to be. Maybe it is morbid, but doing what needs to be done now will make it easier for the ones we leave behind.
Earlier this year, Aunty had EDTA chelation done. This was once a week for 10 weeks at her doctor’s office (excellent Dr. Takemoto-Gentile) to remove heavy metals and detox. A friend thought it was dangerous and put a bit of fear into Aunty’s psyche.
So, one week prior to starting the treatments, Aunty thought a bit about what to do if there was just a week left for Aunty. It was cleaning up the garage that had so much junk in it, one couldn’t walk to the back wall. Strange choice but it felt good. (The garage is still a mess but less of one.)
Turns out, the IV chelation was great, safe, and the side effects were better health and talking to the doctor every week.
It was a successful 1 week exercise and rather an easy one. If Aunty were to do another “what if” for a week long time frame, it might be handwriting individual aloha letters to the kids. Maybe finally painting a couple of the window sills that are starting to peel and flake. Definitely clearing all the papers and miscellany from the desk. Rearranging pots and plants and trimming trees.
For right now, Aunty has the great excuse of a broken arm, but it is healing up so quickly, Aunty’s days of Candy Crushing for hours and hours will be over. It will be full steam ahead again soon.
What would you choose to do?