What would you ask for if a genie granted you three wishes?

(1) that cancer would cease to exist
(2) that all weapons would cease to exist
(3) that all people would suddenly develop tolerance, understanding, and love toward each other

I might need more than one genie to pull these off.

What experiences are most meaningful to you?

My first reaction was to say that things I do with other people (e.g., conversations, sharing meals) are the most meaningful. But I instantly realized that some experiences that I do all alone, usually away from other people, are just as meaningful (e.g., journal writing, thinking, writing, imagining).

I guess that I’d say the experiences that are the most meaningful are those that allow me to grow personally, intellectually, and spiritually.

As a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?

In high school I wanted to be a doctor. I hadn’t thought about that in a long time. I guess I don’t have too many regrets that my aspiration didn’t come to pass, as I never look back on my life now and wonder what it would have been like if I had become a doctor.

I did, however, go back to school in my later years and earn my Ph.D. at age 63. Not the same kind of doctor, but for me, now, probably a more meaningful achievement.

Complete this sentence: The best day of my life was….

I’m pretty sure everybody else’s first inclination was the same as mine: to say “the day I got married” or “the day my child was born.” But in my case, I think the most meaningful day of my life was the day I went away to college.

I spent my adolescence in a dysfunctional family situation. For six years I told myself that I just had to hold on until I went away to college. The day I finally left was the day I began my real life, the life in which I could seek out new experiences, make my own choices and decisions, and get away from constant verbal abuse and humiliation. Everything else that followed in my life, including marriage and parenthood, was a result of learning how to become my own person.

Bonus question: What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up?

Yes, I say this every week. Last week was a good one, and this week I look forward to more of the same. Retirement is good. Every day is good. Sometimes I even lose track of what day of the week it is.

Enjoy your upcoming week, everyone!

© 2016 by Mary Daniels Brown

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