I am sure you have heard of a bucket list. A list of adventures or dreams you aspire to accomplish before you leave this earth. The bucket list may be filled with dream vacations, exciting adventures or thrilling experiences. The goal of the bucket list is to keep track of these and slowly tally the events and adventures that you achieve along the way. The list may be long or short. It may be filled with life-threatening adventures or relaxing experiences. The truth about a bucket list is that it means different things to different people.
But on my journey of healing the bucket list transformed itself into an evolutionary experience of courage through adventure. My bucket list included life goals, dream vacations, and extreme adventures. But the funny truth was that I only got to extreme adventures after meeting my life goals. Thus, my first bucket list adventure occurred in the midst of my life goal of publishing a book. This book proved to be a foundation for the healing that spiritual and emotional healing that my extreme adventures would intensify.
My first bucket list experience was rappelling down a waterfall in Hawaii. It was a magnificent experience with sensory input from nature filled with plenty of healing energy. It had its challenges wrapped up in the magic. During the adventure, one of my son’s slipped off the edge of the waterfall. But as my life flashed before me, I was confident he was strong enough to get up and rappel down. But turned out to be an amazing bonding experience, empowering memory, and a stepping stone on my healing journey. That extraordinary experience helped me realize, I didn’t need to follow the herd like a sheep. And it opened up the possibilities for me to foster the courage to face my biggest challenge in life. My perspective shift through each adventure and my life’s challenges gave me the courage to share my abuse story on paper before telling my family. And in 2020, I began the journey to open Pandora’s box and reveal my abuse experience through my story of forgiveness.
A bucket list suddenly became a tool to propel my journey rapidly. I found new adventures to enhance my sensory experiences and propel self-reflection. Deep in the middle of my journey, a bucket list goal that seemed impossible but extraordinary came into my mind. And it took me 4 years to work up the courage to take the leap. Skydiving was the bucket list dream adventure. I knew the experience would enhance my perspective. I had a gut feeling that skydiving would quickly give my body and mind new sensory experience to place my trauma into a new perspective. But before I developed the courage to leap out of an airplane, I had to use my courage to face my biggest fear and unravel the truth of my trauma through EMDR (eye movement desensitization and reprocessing). After the emotional and spiritual healing, I was again filled with the courage to go outside of the box and tackle the bucket list of adventures.
Finally, courage fueled my mind, body, and spirit to take the leap. The moment I climbed on that airplane, I instantly felt peace of mind and body. It was a surreal experience of serenity and tranquility. It felt strange, almost like I was someone else. As I looked around the tiny crowded plane I felt at peace. There was no fear. I was ecstatic to be in this place and the anxiety that plagued me during life challenges didn’t show itself. The fear of the unknown that debilitated me in my life, didn’t emerge.
I was about to embark on the most dangerous experience of my life, yet, fear was nowhere to be seen. And slowly as my life flashed before me and the challenges I had overcome fell into a new perspective.
And I felt amazing. I was breathing calmly watching my cousin and the other people surrender their control. And I remained completely relaxed, even though the door of the airplane was open and I was about to leap into the unknown. It was time to jump. I was sitting on the bench with a huge smile on my face and excited to let go and fly. We slowly maneuvered to the floor of the plane. And I held on to the straps of my vest surrendering and allowing my instructor to guide me into my free flying experience. Most people call this the free fall but I always knew I was going to fly. My gut instinct told me two years ago that the sensations of flying would help me see my courageous battle as a victim of sexual abuse through new eyes. And as I flew, I suddenly realized I had been flying through all my difficult experiences and recognized that my journey had gone full circle. I had gone through so many difficult experiences but each bucket list adventure helped me evolve into a confident, courageous, and powerful woman.
Skydiving was the most exhilarating experience of my life. I felt powerful and free as I flew through the air. And in that moment, I knew that there would be more skydiving and bucket list experiences in my future.
The next adventures on my bucket list are yet to be revealed. But I know that each experience will make my journey much more invigorating and powerful. So, if you have a bucket list, be patient with those adventures. It may take time to achieve them, but know that they will each serve a greater purpose in your life. Embrace those dream vacations. Thrive through those thrilling experiences. And remember you are worthy of your biggest dream, you deserve that big adventure and you are always good enough to achieve it. The secret to life is surrendering and allowing the experiences to teach us lessons along the way.
Be open to new experiences. Embrace the unknown. And find the adventures that work for you. The results will be unique and powerful.