Sunday, December 28, 2014

Beginning the Annual Year End Review

I have been reflecting on 2014, a year of good times and disappointments, as all of them are.  For the past two years my New Year's 'resolution' has been to have ridiculous amounts of fun and the Best Year Ever.   It's worked pretty well for me and there have been lots of laughs.   But since my birthday this year when I turned Really Old, I have been more pensive about it all.   Daylight is burning, I can feel the heat, and I need to think about what things are still important to do.   I am content with who I am, thank goodness, and my life is a good one, but there are lots of things left to do to make it even better.   I realize, a little late, that I have been far too reclusive in my life, and it is much harder at this point, especially given my definite preferences in people, to find the kinds of friends who would fill the bill.   I have a family I adore and one friend who brings great joy into my life but I can hardly expect them to fill every minute and the bulk of my time is spent alone.   But it does no good to brood over what I would have done differently (more children! more friends!) if I had it to do all over again.  And besides, old or not, I am having more fun than ever before in my life.   So . . .

I don't want to get caught up in regretting the past or dreading the future.  What I have is today, and so I am thinking this week about where to put my energy going forward.    I want to learn some new skills and do some new things, and it would be nice if they added bonus friends to my life.  What could I get pretty good at in a year if I started now?   Learning something new is good for the soul and often leads to meeting new people.  And since I would like to quit working in the next year or so, I really need to build a structure that will enrich my mind and my time going forward.  

My brother suggested learning to pilot a plane, but I am deterred by cost and my own fears.  Scuba is a possibility - despite the cost - but my doctor insists that I  not consider it until I take a stress test, which I expect to do this spring.  I am thinking of buying a mountain dulcimer, an instrument I played in college about a million years ago, but that is also slightly pricey and (worse) would most likely end up being another solitary activity.   I will probably buy a new sewing machine at some point -- I'm still having too many tension troubles with my old one -- and there will be classes to take if I do that, to hone my pitiful sewing skills, but sewing is rarely a group activity either.    

Next year I will continue to find time for the things I already like do, amateur radio, search and rescue, Morse Code, sewing and crafting and cooking.  I will certainly try to fish and kayak and hike more, whether alone or with people, outdoorsy things are very satisfying activities, mentally and physically.   And I am thinking about planning a trip.   I would be a solo traveler and know I do not much like to travel alone so I am considering a tour of some kind.   If I could find an interesting place where I could also do or learn something interesting that would be a bonus.   I might just write whatever ideas I come up with and decide by a blind draw.   Because really, it doesn't make much difference what I choose, it just matters that I do something.

So I have much to look forward to.   But I am open to new ideas about things new to me, and hoping that someone out there will introduce me to thoughts that will lead me into uncharted territory --  Do you have any ideas to throw into the hopper?  What should go on my list?  


Kim@Snug Harbor said...

Oh, please pick the dulcimer. I've always loved those and you know how to play one. I'm very impressed. Look on EBAY or Craig's List for a used one. You might get one at a good price. I'd love to see a blog post about that.

Have you ever looked into a bus tour? My parents have been doing that for the past few years and they love them. They go to different places around the US. My dad said he wishes they would have started that ages ago. Everything is planned out for them. He said some single people always go along and its not all couples, which would be nice for you. OR, you can google LEARNING VACATIONS and see all the cool stuff that comes up.

I can't wait to see where the new year takes you. xo

Barbara said...

Good for you deciding to break out. I've been a recluse myself, and so I know what you are talking about. I have made peace with being alone much of the time, but it isn't for everyone. As a SCUBA diver, of course, I vote for that. It's so much fun, albeit expensive, depending on what you do. There are some great destinations, however, that are wonderful, a relatively cheap on the Scuba scale. As for travel, I can highly recommend this group:
I traveled to Ireland with them, and it was wonderful. Many on my own tour had traveled with them previously and were back for seconds and thirds. Lots of good destinations on their web page.

sue in mexico mo said...

Happy New Year!

StitchinByTheLake said...

Is there a community college in your area? If so, and if you are 65, usually the tuition is at least half, sometimes more. There are lots of things I'd like to, photography, ASL.... I also don't know what your faith preferences are but most churches have classes that are open to all. I've noticed that when I take a morning class someone always wants to go for lunch afterwards and that can lead to a friendship. Lots of school are looking for people to volunteer - run off papers for teachers, have lunch with a lonely child, etc. There are lots of friendly people at schools! I'm hoping your new year is a productive one but also filled with lots of new experiences and people! blessings, marlene

Boud said...

If you love music why not learn to play the recorder? it's equally good as a solo or ensemble instrument and there are more groups, formal and otherwise than you might have realized! it's a great way to enjoy time with friends, too, and to make new friends. Just a thought!