What do you want to do before you die?
That’s a pretty loaded question for anyone to answer, and one that many of us probably don’t think about on a day-to-day basis. Weirdly enough, a week before my high school graduation, I sat down and wrote out a bucket list. Or as I titled it on top of the page: “What I Want to do Before I Get to Heaven.” I didn’t have a terminal illness at the time or had a near death experience. For some time in my life I did think about taking my own life out of desperation and feeling like life wasn’t worth living anymore, but thank God I was able to get through that time with my life intact. In any case, it didn’t seem like making a bucket list would be a common thing to do for someone in my situation. But I decided to go along with it and wrote down some ideas.
I like to think that my ideas for my bucket list are unique to me as a person. It is my life and I’m the only one who can make such a list for myself. On my bucket list I wrote down goals like donating a large sum of money to charity, learning a new skill, traveling to some far off destination, and more. I think a lot of people have similar goals on their respective lists, and it’s a great thing to celebrate commonality in each others’ goals. But I also wrote down goals that were specifically targeted at me as an individual.
One of the goals is actually one that cannot simply be crossed off after one attempt. This goal is one that I will work at for the rest of my life. And that goal is mental health awareness.
When looking back over my bucket list as a now 24 year old woman, I was slightly shocked to find this particular goal listed. I don’t really remember writing it down but obviously it came into my teenage brain for one reason or another. Even back then I knew the importance of speaking out about what I was going through and letting others know that they were not alone in their struggles. Now that I’m a little older and have lived a little bit more life I now feel more qualified and prepared to do this kind of work. What I wrote as an 18 year old young woman is now being manifested in my twenties. Life has a way of doing that sometimes. What a beautiful thing it is.