What’s Next?

Last week, I had an appointment with a new doctor. That means it’s time to fill out a whole bunch of paperwork upon arriving. One of the sections of paperwork asked if I had a living will and a last will and testament. I checked no to both. They are not done yet, even though I am aware that they must be completed. As a matter of fact, I already have a blank living will from the surrogate’s office in the county that I live. This document is pre-written out, except for blank spaces and check marks that I need to add based on my choices for medical care should I be unable to express these wishes verbally. I bet a lot of people have waited until their parents have passed away before actually taking the time to complete these important documents. I lost my mom last year and my dad in 2016. As their primary caregiver, I witnessed their end of life challenges first-hand. I am forever changed by these experiences, both in challenging ways (witnessing their struggles) and good ways (spending time with them).

Now that I have completed these tasks for my parents, including the grueling work as executor over the past year, I am ready to move forward. However, I have lost interest in going back to doing many of the things that I used to enjoy. That’s because I want to experience new things, and not simply go back to the old patterns of living. Looking at it from another viewpoint, the Covid shutdown put a stop to many of the activities that we all enjoyed. We’ve all had to create new ways of being (and surviving) during this pandemic. Now that things have opened up (at least for now), many people have gone right back to the way it was for them; doing the same activities, eating at the same restaurants, etc. I would prefer to try new things, and new ways of living.

As a single person with no family commitments now, I can literally create my life from scratch. One thing I crave, at least in the short term, is alone time. As an introvert, I regain my energy from quiet time; the opposite of extroverts who prefer to be around groups of people to regain their energy. And also, because I’m still recuperating from five years of not taking care of myself as caregiver, I’d like alone time for the peace and quiet that it will bring. I’d like to spend a lot of time in nature as that can be a valuable part of the healing process. And I’d also like to travel to locations across North America, camping along the way. This venture has been delayed, but I’m preparing for it.

Here are some of the things that I’d like as I move into this next phase of my life.

Live a minimalist lifestyle. I read someone else’s blog during this Ultimate Blog Challenge that reviewed the benefits of being a minimalist. It allows for a simpler life. Less physical clutter, and more space in the mind to focus on our most important and desired pursuits. All I own now (my parents and my belongings) is located in two 10×10 storage units. Ultimately, my goal is to whittle down to one 10×10 storage unit.

Build up a health coach business. Up until now, my business has been more like a hobby. While caregiving, I earned my life coach certification, and have coached on and off on a part-time basis. My masters degree in Integrative Health was an eye opener to the wonderful world of holistic health. And as a caregiver, I learned a great deal, as I interacted with various doctors, nurses, and professional caregivers.

Continue to grow as an individual stock trader. After meeting with a few brokerage professionals, I decided to trade my own money on my own, as I was not happy with their trading styles. One of my escapes during my caregiving tasks was learning various ways to trade. Most individuals know how to buy a stock when it’s low, hold it, and sell when it’s high. I now have an understanding on how to make a profit when a stock is going down, or when a stock remains in a range. In addition to trading stocks, stock options and futures allow for these various methods of trading. Putting this into practice will be the challenging and fun part.

Play Guitar: Another escape I had during my caregiver years was to learn how to play the guitar. I was able to purchase an electric guitar with credit card points, and it still works great. Until now, my practice has been primarily playing my favorite songs with chords. I am now ready to delve deeper by practicing scales, learning where the notes are on the fretboard, and playing more intricate songs.

Live a Holistic Lifestyle: I feel better when I eat healthy foods (especially vegetables), meditate, write (thanks UBC!!!), exercise, etc. I want to create time each day to do these activities.

Do all these things (and more) while on the road: After my self-imposed caregiver status at my parents’ home for five years, I want to get out on the road and explore wildlife with my camera.

It is time to take the road less travelled. To start anew. The time is now.



8 thoughts on “What’s Next?”

  1. Marc, wow, what a Life Moment. I am so happy for you! I am also experiencing a new time of life, as my husband passed August 1 after a long illness. I became his full-time caregiver, while struggling to keep my own health (not successful- got cancer) and holistic practice. Thank God (and I do) my vitality is rebounding rapidly. And I know God has great plans for me for the next 20 years. I’m listening! Btw, this is your most clear and cogent post I’ve seen so far. So you are clearly in the right “place”. It will be fun to hear what comes next. All the best to you!

    1. Hi Kebba. I am sorry for your loss. And, it’s good to hear that you are currently on the upswing with your health. Thanks for sharing that my post was clear. It’s funny, I did not know what to write about, and I was going to skip today. This topic popped in my head late in the day. As I wrote it, I knew it was a challenging topic, but it seemed to flow out of me really well. Be well.

  2. I was caregiver for my mom and when she passed in 2000, it was just dad with hubby and me. He passed in 2006 and while mom had Alzheimer’s and was tough to watch her go downhill, my dad died of a broken heart. They had been married almost 57 years when mom passed he was a lost soul without her. I’m so glad they are now together. I love your plan, I hope you can get out and live life to it’s fullest ( but still take time to watch your stocks hopefully grow! On a good note we both have our living will and last will and testament. Need to minimalist somewhat she our granddaughter doesn’t have to do it all when the time comes. BTW, I love your family photo.

  3. I love your ideas! Go get ’em….
    Oh- and yes, the pandemic is (unfortunately) alive and thriving- so fill out that Living Will (aka Medical Directives) NOW. So, if G-d forbid, you do contract COVID-19 and it’s serious, you get the degree of care you desire!

  4. I love the title of this blog as well as the two posts I’ve read. You’ve got diverse interests, Marc – which makes you interesting to me. Thanks for sharing. I look forward to following your path as you recreate your life in the image you want it to take.

    Best –


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