I shall dye my hair some obnoxious color, give it a tight perm and start wearing rhinestone-studded spectacles. Or maybe allow my hair to go fully gray, and grow it out long enough to wear in a thick braid down my back.
I shall wear flowing, bohemian skirts and weigh my neck down with lots of necklaces – at least one of which must have huge hunks of raw turquoise.
I shall turn the storage building in the back yard into my personal workshop where I shall make beauty products from natural ingredients, beaded jewelry and handmade greeting cards.
I shall keep bees, collect their raw honey and sell beautiful, golden jars of the stuff at a roadside stand.
I shall read Jack Kerouac, write haunting poetry, stay inside on a Thursday simply because it’s Thursday.
I shall have a cat and never name it because cats don’t come when they’re called so it doesn't really matter if they have a name.
I shall have a basset hound and name him Arthur.
I shall become comfortable using a typewriter instead of a computer and foster several false starts at writing the great American novel – or at least a book of passable poetry, thoughts and observations.
I shall live in an old Victorian home where the peeling wallpaper only adds to its charm.
I shall have a personal library and walk into it every day simply to inhale deeply and breathe in the scent of the volumes I've collected.
I shall turn my home into a bed and breakfast, fill the guest rooms with antiques and local artwork and the bathrooms with my homemade beauty products.
I shall kneel in the garden caring not one whit about the dirt on my knees or under my fingernails and wear a large, floppy hat to combat the sun and wrinkles.
I shall send my children baskets filled with love and my grandchildren shall receive pieces of ribbon and buttons and other leavings and findings with instructions to make something beautiful for me to hang on my refrigerator.
I shall help my husband tie his neckties when he deems the occasion fit to wear one and, with pleasure, listen to him sing to himself when he doesn't think anyone else is listening.
I shall smile secretly to myself at some half-remembered dream.
I shall feed the birds all year long and rise early to catch worms.
I shall paint my toenails simply because it makes me happy and then wear boots so no one can see what color I've chosen; it shall be my little secret.
All these things I shall do because I shall have no qualms at showing my age or eccentricity – though perhaps I shall begin today so my new penchant for flowing skirts and dirty fingernails doesn't come as a surprise to anyone tomorrow.
First, I must win the lottery.
NOTE: All this brings to mind Jenny Joseph’s poem, Warning. I didn't realize it until after I’d written everything above how similar they are in some respects – but as a matter of note, I, in no way, intend to copy or reproduce her work or her style. My style is my own, and so is my work. I simply note here the similarities.