Monday, 27 April 2015

A Birthday Lesson

Two years ago, give or take, I was beginning a challenge. The challenge was to learn, or have the courage to do 25 things that prior to turning 25, I was either unable to do, or had never undertaken. I wrote a long, rambling post about it, and given that I have only blogged once in the meantime, it's just a few scrolls down. If you can't be bothered to scroll, it's here.

I'd like to say that the sparse posting has been because I have been completing all the tasks I set, and that even though it's taken me two years instead of one, I have now finished them all.

I'd like to say that, but I can't.

I failed.

Those who know me well will be unsurprised to hear this. I am an 'ideas-person', not a 'completer-finisher'. Consequently I started a few of the things, and even finished one or two:

2. Make a short film - Completed! I think my previous post counts.
4. Run a marathon - Completed! In 4hrs, 2mins, success!
6. Swim across the river - The river in question was the Wear in Durham. I got halfway and turned back because all my friends had stolen both my shoes. Long story.
7. Go to a regular party in fancy dress - Completed! I went as Mario if you're interested.
9. Join a political protest - I donated some money to a political party, but that hardly counts.
10. Read or watch the complete works of Shakespeare (all the plays) - Again, I watched some, but nowhere near all. Barley even some if I'm honest.
11. Learn how to ballroom dance - A little, we had about 5 lessons, which I've now almost completely forgotten.
16. Learn to ride a horse - I half learned. I can do a very successful 'rising trot', and a far less successful 'canter'.
17. Build an item of furniture - I built some Ikea kitchen cabinets, but that's probably more in the 'assembled' category than 'build'.
24. Plant a tree that will live longer than me - Completed! I planted some Yew trees at a Medieval Church we're building at work. (Yes, I mean that - this is what I do).

Four and five halfs doesn't make 25.

As I said, I failed.

But, I have done some other things since turning 25.
I bought a house, and in the process conquered my fear of the 'death pledge' (literal translation of Mortgage).
I got a job which I mostly love, working in the sector I'm passionate about.
I started to get on much better with my Dad, and my brother and I went on holiday just the two of us and, despite some arguments didn't kill each other.
I got engaged, planned a wedding and married my wonderful wife.
I've managed to admit that I failed in completing something.

All of that to say:
I made a list of stuff I planned to do with a bit of my life.
I didn't do most of that stuff.
I did other stuff.
The other stuff I did was often good, sometimes great stuff, just not the stuff I planned or expected to do.

Speaking to older and wiser people, I think that maybe that's how life goes.

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