The gifts we give ourselves

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I celebrated my 62nd birthday a couple of days ago. Normally I would celebrate the occasion by purchasing something that I had had my eye on for a while.

2019 was a bit different. This year the urge to get A Thing was unusually muted. This eldritch quiet allowed me to ask a question: “Well, what do you really want?”

The answer came easily, almost instantaneously. I want to finish the massive renovation project currently underway on the second floor of my house. I want to get all the infrastructure into the proper places, paint it, put in nice flooring, add some art and a couple of comfy pieces of furniture, and enjoy the room.

So that’s what I chose as my birthday present: To get it done, and get the project off my to-do list once and for all.

Most of the materials are already here. I don’t need any new tools. What I need is time, energy, commitment, focus, and a heaping helping of common sense. It doesn’t have to be huge contiguous blocks of free time, either. Any free time will do. I just got in from an evening meeting a short time ago, and it’s fast approaching midnight, but while my computer was booting up I grabbed a utility knife and a roll of drywall tape and started work on two new seams.

So, between now and December 31, 2019, that’s the plan: A little bit here, a little bit there. Use big bursts of energy when they’re available; do gentle puttering around when they’re not. Just keep going.

The only thing I can’t figure out about this is why I didn’t think of it sooner, because it feels so right.

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