It has occurred to me, as I reread my ten things list, and peruse other's lists, that the things I mention in mine are not MY accomplishments, but rather things that have 'happened' to me. Except for the zip lines in Costa Rica, nothing I mentioned was a personal action which I instigated. Mine are mostly accidents of time, place and circumstance, and I am rather dismayed by that.
Never have I (nor will I) climb mountains or run marathons or wrestle alligators (although some of the guys I dated and wrestled in high school/college could have passed for alligators). I am not known for writing books, endowing a college scholarship, curing cancer, running for office or making a difference in the lives of any people outside my family.
Supposedly, it is never too late to remedy our regrets at paths not taken in life, difficult as those remedies may be. Is there time left for me? Will I ever be able to prove my life meant something; that I truly had an important function in the world - not merely taking up space in it? When I think about the things I have done which I could be, if not proud of, at least content with, my children come to mind. I have three, all of whom are good, ethical people, leading productive lives and allowing their father and me to revel in those lives vicariously (while trying not to be excessive about it). They are truly my greatest accomplishments - and yet children are the greatest accomplishments of countless millions of people - so that does not set me apart.
Owning my successful small business doesn't count, since many others have done that, although I do have gratitude for being instrumental in making upwards of 700 brides and their parents happy, but that is so fleeting as to be of little importance after the fact.
I think we all wonder what we have been put on Earth to accomplish and I am certainly no exception. But it has become clear to me that I still don't have a handle on that purpose as of yet. I do hope it will be made clear to me soon, before it is too late to achieve it.