I FIND most of my life has been lived scootering along, sometimes on track towards some main goal or super plan, at other times working my way through a haze of busyness, transporting children here, husband there, appointments, meetings, events to attend, work to turn up for, clubs to support.
After the children left we continued to be busy, the dream of a peaceful life not really eventuating, and they were all choices we made, so no one is to blame.
We travelled, visited family, involved ourselves in community activities and joined organisations.
I continued to work for years... something I loved to do, so the chaos theory continued to operate.
Another description for those years was “winging it”.
There were lots of us “winging it” in those years, good friends who would grab a swift coffee together on our way from one appointment to another.
A new home meant that we no longer had a garden to stress over, maintenance to see too, so there was now time to think, time to dream, to read, seize the moment – carpe diem.
I always loved that saying as it summed up beautifully for me what I so believed I should do with my life, but never could quite manage to succeed in doing.
Now, suddenly, I have reached this strange equilibrium in my life.
Life has slowed down.
I have time to enjoy that cup of coffee with friends, time to call in and visit someone for an hour of chat, but most importantly, I have really sorted out in my life the people I need to keep me going through these next years.
This took careful planning.
I now have the GP who has my living will stored carefully in her files with the big stamp that says DNR on the front.
I certainly don’t want resuscitation if it means quality of life is gone.
I trust her to make the right decisions.
I have a terrific surgeon if I need him again.
When he first operated on me several years ago I cheerfully told him then that while I certainly appreciated his skills as a surgeon, I also chose him for his youth – he will outlive me in the natural order of things.
My dentist is youthful, courteous, gentle and very skilful. All I ask.
Our solicitor is young, smart, does his homework and gives us wise advice.
He has our wills, the names of our powers of attorney (our adult children), and will guide them through whatever needs to be done after we drop off the twig.
Our financial planner knows where all the money is (ha!) and has a handle on how we’re managing.
After that I know the best butcher in town (I think) who knows my name, sells me fabulous cuts of meat and has a great staff (including two terrific sons), and has never sold me a bad cut of meat yet. Thanks David.
My hairdresser is the right one for me, the car mechanic has serviced my car for years, and the dress maker knows exactly how much all my slacks need taking up.
So you see, I am organised. WE are organised.
We’re certainly not planning to depart this precious earth for some years yet, as we have only just moved house, after all.
But at least as we grow older and a little less sure of our world, as surely will happen, I will be able to contact any of these good people in my life and they will know and understand what is required.
That is the plan.
I just hope it works!