It's become popular to make "Bucket Lists" of things you want to do before you die. I think I'll make a list of things I could do in the past and truly wish I could do just one more time. I think I'll call it my fantasy list:
1. I want to go spend a week at a scuba diving resort. I want to dive three times a day in the spectacularly clear water on Palancar reef. There is no feeling like the flying, weightless way you feel while underwater looking at pretty fish. You can hang upside down, twist and turn and do flips. I want to take night dives and see the wild side of the sea.
I want to do this without waking up the next day unable to move because of a lethal combination of pain and exhaustion. I want to be able to bounce out of bed, have breakfast and climb back into the dive boat for more of the same, and not worry about being in the sun because of the medicine I take.
2. I want to go out to a club and dance. Drinking would be an awesome addition. I'd like to shut the place down and be out on the floor most of the night. I'd like not to trip over my own feet, have my knees buckle or feel like I'm either going to faint or vomit. I don't want to get too hot or too cold and I don't want to get tired.
Again, I want to awaken the next morning able to get out of bed and feel like there is a reasonable possibility I could do it again.
3. I'd like to take a trip without worrying about early boarding and wheelchairs at the gates. I want to get on the plane with everyone else, lift my own bag over my head and still have enough vigor to play with all the stuff in my carry-on bag.
4. I'd like to do one more movie junket.* I want to stay at a five-star hotel in a room with marble bathrooms and sinfully soft sheets. I want hot and cold running room service and to be able to get massages without fear of pain and facials with no fear of reactions with my over-medicated skin. While there I'd like to feel like having dinner with my friends in the hotel restaurant and then sit in the bar and watch for celebrities, not go straight up to my room, grab some soup and collapse into bed.
*Seeing the movie and interviewing its stars and directors would simply be gravy.
5. I want to go to the rock show of my choice. I'd like to be able to afford the good seats and not worry about spending all of my medication budget. I want to be there for the opening act through the final encore and stand up the whole time. I want to dance to the songs I love and sing to the rest with no fear of seizing up just when the headliner takes the stage. I want to jump up and down and actually authentically have a good time. And, I don't want to write about it.
Once more, I want to awaken the next morning with the ability to function like a normal human being.
6. I'd like to go see family members in other cities without worrying they will feel obliged to plan everything around how I feel. I want them to take me where they take everyone else, stay as long as they generally do and help them around the house while I'm there. I'd like to be a joy to see, not a burden.
7. I want to go to Orlando and go through all the big parks there. I want to be there when the gates open and leave when they close. I wouldn't mind taking breaks during the day to check out the restaurants, but I'd like to ride rides without worrying that my back will explode, feel like laughing all day and walk around as long as I like without pain taking over. I want to go out at night and drink and dance at all the hot spots and get up the next morning and do it again until I've finished every park there.
I'd like to do that and know when I got home I wouldn't be in bed for at least a month.
8. I'd like to not see a doctor of any kind for at least six months.
9. I'd like to take a wine-tasting tour without any consequences. I want to see as many vineyards in a day as I desire, trying wine without its acidity causing severe gastric distress. I'd like to discuss the wines and buy what I like. I want to take the whole tour and be able to see all the areas they will show me.
It would be a pleasure not to be up all night with a burning esophagus.
10. I would like to not see myself as a person with arthritis, but as a woman who can do what she likes when she likes with no consequences.