Wow! Wow! I can’t believe my last blog post was in April. I was still reeling from seeing my favorite movie and reading my favorite book of the year (so far). (That would be The Artist and The Maid of Fairbourne Hall, respectively.) I had just finished writing a book that will come out in December (more to come on that at a later date). And I had just learned that I was going to have to find a new place to live. A lot has happened since then. But let’s not dwell in the past. Nope, today, let’s look to the future.
But to do that, I have to tell you a little story about the past. (Yes, I so get the irony.)
This time last year, I was barreling down on my 30th birthday, desperately trying to check off items on my 30 by 30 list (as you may recall). Boy there were a lot of things to get done, and I missed my mark by about a dozen. And to be quite honest, while I’m glad I did the things I did on my list, I was quite relieved to see my 30th birthday gone and the slate wiped clean. I was so relieved that I let myself off the hook for setting any real goals for my 30th year.
Don’t get me wrong. I haven’t exactly done nothing this past year. But I didn’t have a clear focus.
Then, a few weeks ago, I was celebrating a coworker’s birthday. Sitting around the conference room table, eating cake and the birthday girl sat down next to me. Without thinking about it, I asked, “So what will you do this year that you’ve never done before?”
The room got really quiet, and I held my breath. I hadn’t meant to get too personal, but it just seemed like a logical question. Moving forward means trying and experiencing new things, right? You can’t turn the clock back or get back your years, so how will you use them to move forward?
The birthday girl didn’t have an answer for me. But that’s okay, because I think the person I really needed to ask that question of was myself. What will I do this year–at 31–that I’ve never done before? What new experiences will I try? What will I open myself up to that I haven’t ever before?
I can’t fully answer that yet. I won’t be able to until next year, I guess. But I am undertaking something that I’ve always wanted to do but always found an excuse not to. I’m going to volunteer at the Nashville Public Library. Just a couple times a month, but enough time, I hope, to share my love of reading with a few someone elses. Books have always been an important part of my life, and if I can share one favorite book, one inspiring author, one life-altering story, then maybe I’ll be able to change a life.
At the very least I’ll be doing something new. Moving forward. Investing in lives.
What will you do this year that you’ve never done before?