How would you like to be remembered?

How would you like to be remembered?

Are you looking for a guidepost for how to live your life now? Here’s a suggestion for you. What about making a list of the attributes, accomplishments, projects, and all the things you would like to be remembered for?

A good friend, who was doing exceptionally well in his Parkinson’s journey, regaining an admirable quality of life after considerable setbacks, developed a sudden illness and passed within 48 hours. While a shock for all who knew him, it was a blessing for him. In writing a tribute to him, it became very apparent to me, that for all his amazing accomplishments (trilingual, prestigious advanced degrees, publications including a novel, Peace Corps volunteer, and so on), it was how he dealt with his diagnosis, and it’s progression, and how he dealt with all those around him, that made my fervent admiration for him skyrocket into the stratosphere. In the last 3 months of his life, he regained the ability to eat food by mouth instead of a feeding tube, he continued to exercise, he improved his skills in a boxing class for those with the same diagnosis, and with specialized glasses he could read books again, all the while radiating such marvelous kindness, warmth, and optimism. He was constantly teaching us all— this is the way to live and live fully.

So how would you like to be remembered? It could be for accomplishments you have already achieved. It could be for dreams you have or things you want to manifest. They could be a big or small creative project in any media such as canvas, yarn, paper, audio, music, stories, non-fiction, good food for family and friends and strangers, an edible garden, helping to raise wonderful human beings, just to name a few of the many options. Or you could fully heal from a past event or reconcile with another person, or triumph over adversity of any kind. It could be learning a language (trilingual anyone?), deeply understanding Einstein’s theory of Relativity, or getting a grasp on quantum physics. It could be smiling at people, strangers in stores, or as you pass them in the streets, just smiling with kindness. It could be savoring the present moment, whether stormy or calm, very wet or very dry, savoring the gift of being alive right now.

What would I like to be most remembered for? For the smile, that comes from the heart and is irrepressible. And the ability to love, not a blind love, or a maternal love, and certainly not a condescending love, but a love from the heart that sees the struggles, conflicts, and contradictions of a human life, and feels that we are all in this together.

So I wish you a marvelous world of discovery as you explore what you want to be remembered for. You may be quite surprised by what emerges… This is one exercise where surprises can be magical!

4 Replies

  1. Barbara Reed says:

    What a beautiful tribute and inspiration… a life that includes active living…

  2. Cindy Meiggs says:

    Beautiful writing from a beautiful soul. Thank you for sharing. 🙏🏼

  3. I am inspired by this blog, thank you, Anne.

  4. I am inspired by this blog. Thank you, Anne.

Post a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *