One of the items on my bucket list is “work on some junk.” Now I know this is vague, but let me assure you I know exactly what “junk” is.
“Junk” isn’t just one thing. Most of the time, it feels like “junk” is everything. “Junk” is broken friendships, divorced parents, messy relationships, messier break ups, and tragic deaths. “Junk” is my story — the things that have happened to me, and to those I love, and the things I’ve done to myself. “Junk” is the baggage I haul around with me on the journey of life, baggage that I am seriously quite tired of lugging around. So I’ve been working on getting rid of it. Working on processing, forgiving, and healing.
But it doesn’t happen overnight, and there’s no video proof, like with skydiving.
So how can I track my progress? By focusing on what I have done well.
I have shared my goal with people who are close to me. I asked for accountability and got specific with them about wanting to forgive, the ways I plan to work on it, and the places I get hung up.
I’m going to counseling.
I wrote about it and invited each of you into my story. I worried about this, not just because it felt like I was being exposed, but also because I wasn’t sure it was relevant to the message of Sooner Not Later. Surprisingly that post was one of the most popular posts of the year.
I’ve also been slowly working my way through a really awesome book by Desmond Tutu called the Book of Forgiving. Each chapter has exercises, meditations and a simple prayer at the end. It’s easy to read yet really hard to digest.
But even with all that, I know I will continue to be a work in progress, a flawed human being and every day I will have to work on learning to forgive, letting go of the people and things that have hurt me, and both offering and accepting grace.
But if it’s true, that this is never ending then when is it appropriate to check “work on some junk” off my list? When can I say, “I did that!”?
The way I see it, I can go ahead and check it off now.
The whole point of this 52 in 52 weeks bucket list challenge was to start doing and trying things I’ve been saying I want to do “someday.” Fun and exciting things like travel the world, hike a volcano, learn to surf, and even smaller things like try local foods, walk the bridge, etc.
I had the chance to investigate all of these new experiences this year. And they are all things I would love to experience again and again. So it only seems fair that if I can check each one of those off the bucket list, then I should be able to check off “work on some junk.” Because, just like all those other adventurous things I’m learning to do, and will continue to do, I’m also learning to forgive, take care of myself and leave the baggage behind.
If you can relate to the struggle to forgive and allow yourself room to grow/get healthy, you’re going to love my new secret project — Her Bags Were Packed. I can’t tell you when I will be unveiling the details but if you want to keep updated and find out what’s happening before anyone else, sign up here.