Thursday, 14 March 2013

My bucket list - in reverse

My Listmania exercise for this week is to write a 'Reverse Bucket List' - a list of all the awesome things I have already done - to celebrate my life. That's a very interesting task for a person with depression. In the wrong frame of mind, I will tell you that nothing interesting or awesome or successful has happened in my life, and that I am just going through the motions until the end of this perpetual nightmare. I know perfectly well that my life has been filled to the brim with wow factors, amazing experiences and personal triumphs. And when we link our blogs on Deb's Home Life Simplified website, we will all see that it is not simply moments of perfection, but more of personal bests and dreams that have come true. One person's 'normality' may be another's person's 'celebration'. 
If I EVER had my own classroom again, this would be on my door.
We spend so much of our time and energy on trying to be the best, to win, to perfect, to achieve, to travel to exotic places, to be rich, to be popular and in doing this we lose sight of all the brilliant things we do have and have done.

I still want to be rich, though.

So, here's a list of stuff I've done in my 41 years that I think were awesome moments in time and that you should think I'm awesome for achieving.
  • I was one of the school captains of my primary school.
  • I won the Drama Award in Year 12. I think that might be the non-academic version otherwise known as 'Student Who Consistently Brought Fruit For Recess Award'.
  • I won a trip to Disneyland when I was in Year 12 (a competition on the TV show 'The Wonderful World of Disney') and despite having to take my family including my Grandma, I had an awesome time. A highlight was when my Grandma, little sister and I went to Mexico and my Grandma - bless her - wouldn't buy bottles of tequila with worms in them for me as I was a minor in the eyes of the States. She got nervous buying the alcohol and thought she was aiding and abetting a 'minor' and abandoned ship. Yes... bless her.
  • I became a primary school teacher, teacher of the deaf, and started my masters degree. 
  • I performed in some local theatre company's performances. I wish I could do that again. Something I thought I was really good at. Sigh.
  • Won a Logie and was nominated for Best Supporting Actress in... (oh, wait, sorry that hasn't happened. Yet.)
  • Moved with Tim (my boyfriend) to Shepparton in country Victoria and taught at a Deaf Facility and as a Visiting Teacher for Hearing Impaired Students across the north-east of the state.
  • I married my best friend who also happens to be a spunky superhero who looks after his massive brood and works stupidly long, unrewarding hours to do so while I get my hair done, sit around drinking coffee with my friends, the house gets cleaned by a housekeeper and the children are picked up from their private schools by their nanny. Ummm, no.
  • I watched my Mum die. I know that doesn't sound like an uplifting and wonderful bucket list item, but I feel that I am truly blessed to have been there in her last moments. 
  • I had five amazing, beautiful, loving, funny, annoyingly feral children - who I adore more than anything I have ever known, and who I would like to strangle more than anyone I've ever known. 
  • Driven across the Nullabor and back from Melbourne to Perth with two smelly obnoxious 9 and 10 year olds, two cantankerous 15 month old twins and a husband. An award would be nice.
  • Driven from Melbourne to the Gold Coast and back with two smelly obnoxious 11 and 12 year olds, two cantankerous 3 year old twins, a 5 month old baby who will not be driven at night and a husband. Seriously, give me an award.
  • I started a blog and a Facebook page so I could stand naked (metaphorically) in front of the world and share my life and fears.
I haven't travelled across the world, taught in a remote African village, or been part of a touring circus troupe, and it is very easy to envy everyone else's lives, but I think I'm quite happy with what I have achieved. The moments above have been melded together with hilarious friends, memorable - yet fuzzy -nights out on the vino, tears of laughter and of heart-aching sorrow, and I wouldn't have had it any other way. 

Except to have been rich. 

That would've been really really sweet.


  1. Lisa, firstly you had me with the Drama Award… that you did get. Way to go you… yay! Very much a real award. Then you had me with the Logie Award… that you did not get. Tricker! But I was amazed you survived your two marathon drives, with kids… so for the awards that you didn't get, but should, may I present to you the 'Yes, I am crazy, but I did it' Award!

    Planning any new driving holidays? That, my dear, is a reality show right there that will earn you a Logie for 'Most outstanding performance'…

    I do love your opening comments. So very true… depressed or not, it is to lose sight of what we really have done. What you have done is pretty amazing.

    1. Tim and I have talked about driving to Alice Springs or to cross over to Perth again. Strange moments have us thinking how wonderful an experience it was/is for the kids to drive across our beautiful country and stop wherever we want to see whatever we want. Then the memory comes back of us saying we will NEVER do that again with kids, and how many times we threatened to leave them by the side of the road or that they could fly back without us.

      Kate, I'd really like to contact you without the world reading - if you can, please email me


  2. I cannot see how you have not been given an award after those driving efforts. I find our one just turned three year old bad enough going to and from the local supermarket! I have loved reading your list.... true you may not have travelled the globe but you are raising five children and I suspect I know what will give you more pleasure at the end of the day.

    1. Oh good god - 3 year olds in supermarkets. Why do we put ourselves through that?

      I do feel a bit left out of the conversation when people talk about their trips to exotic places (wow...we went to Adelaide) but I've met some friends who have travelled and not had kids and are now struggling to have them in their 40s who will say 'Yep, I've seen the world & own my house outright, but I'd trade it all for a family.' I guess the grass is always greener on the other side, regardless of the side.

      Thanks Claire. When the kids don't annoy me & are sound asleep, I do think how lucky I am. :)

    2. Hey there is nothing wrong with Adelaide haha

    3. True, Bec. I like going to Adelaide. But it's not quite Thailand is it?

  3. You have done some wonderful things worthy of being proud of! I was also there when my mother-in-law passed away (actually she wasn't my MIL yet as we weren't married yet). It's such a sad moment but an honour to be with them at that moment.

  4. Oh Lisa, you are rich, so, so very rich.

    In humour, in wit, in sass, in parenting skills (they’re all still alive aren’t they…?) and general fabulousness! I think you’re very rich hun, very rich indeed!

    Your Mum… ☹


    1. Thanks Sarah. I'm often impressed that there are still 7 of us at the end of the day. School holidays are coming in a week's time - might be a different story...