A box marked “personal” and accomplishing life goals

Have you accomplished your life goals?


Recently, I rummaged through a dusty old cardboard box marked “personal” looking for a couple of family obituaries I cut out of the newspaper years ago.  I wanted to add the obituary information to my online family tree.  In that old beat up box I found a faded, thin, pink booklet titled My Wonderful Mama written by my daughter as a young girl.  Inside the laminated, construction paper cover was near perfect printing in pencil on lined notebook paper.

The story told in this booklet began with a biography of me, followed by my “most outstanding memories (from) school” which included winning a number one rating in girls glee and in full choir at a state-wide competition.  It included my worst school subject (geometry) and my favorite (social studies).

The handwritten page in that little brad-bound booklet which struck me the most was the page she wrote about my “many goals as an adult.”  My daughter wrote, “They are:

  1. To make the world a better place for kids.

  2. To advocate for kids.
  3. To hold public office.
  4. To improve public education.
  5. To get a college degree.
  6. Have a family and be a great mama.
  7. To be a great gardener.
  8. To have a kid.
  9. To be on a board of a non-profit organization.”

There they were, my life goals from my 20’s, staring up at me from the page.    

My daughter continued, “She has accomplished most of them.  She has accomplished to have a family and be a great mama, to be a great gardener, to have a kid, to advocate for kids, to be on a board of a non-profit organization and to get a college degree.”


Over the past 30 years or so, I did accomplish most of my life goals by working hard and putting myself through college to earn three degrees.  I am truly blessed with a beautiful, intelligent daughter, her sweet husband and my three incredibly adorable grandchildren.  I cherish the times when I was able to work as a board member of the Colorado PTA and Read Aloud Loveland.  Being a classroom volunteer, a member of various school accountability committees, a community gang task force member, and then working as a public high school teacher brought many challenges but also many blessings as I tried to make a difference in the lives of young people.  Lastly, I learned a ton about gardening and landscape design through self-study and the CSU and Texas Master Gardener programs.  All of these opportunities for growth were made even sweeter by the extraordinary people I met along the way.

That list of life goals reminds me I still have work to do to make the world a better place for kids, to be their advocate and to improve public education.  After retiring from teaching, I still enjoy being in the presence of young people so I substitute teach part-time at middle and high schools in the area.  Currently, I’m looking into the possibility of becoming a CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate) volunteer.

I guess that just leaves holding a public office as the only life goal I haven’t yet attempted. Do you think I have time to accomplish it?  Nothing and no one is stopping me.

What do you have left to accomplish?  What is stopping you?

I'd love to know your thoughts...please leave comment

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