If you died tomorrow, what would you most be remembered for?
Thousands of people will die tomorrow. Unless we suffer from a fatal illness, we might not even think about the possibility of "kicking the bucket" in the next 24 hours.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau on World Vital Events there are 1.8 deaths per second, 105 per minute, 6,306 hourly and 151,338 daily. The figures very from source to source, but the reality is that time and tide wait for no man.
As life ticks by at light-speed, I ponder sometimes on what impact my life has had on others. How will I be remembered? Who will make a special effort to attend my funeral, or a remembrance ceremony. Will I have squandered the opportunity to make a difference?
I would like to be remembered as a good dad, as the kind of person that liked to help another people, who challenged the status quo, but respected the need to respect authority.
A while ago, over a beer, a person I had not known long, told me that he had been told that I once stuffed a ballot box to influence the outcome of a nomination. I was stunned, unsure how to react. Over the next few weeks, I questioned some acquaintances about the matter and was stunned to learn that this bit of defamation was treated as a truism in some circles. The sources of the slanderous comments remained constant.
For a long time, the thing that motivated me most was partisan politics. Nothing topped it. Not Family, not relationships, not eduction, no my religion/ When I reflect on the personal cost in terms of university grades, personal reputation, not to mention my mental health, I wonder why it was so intoxicating.
If I had hit a Moose on a highway late one night coming back from some political meeting or another, no one would have remembered me at all, it would have been as if I never existed.
Today, I have three great kids, a loving wife and much different priorities. They are my true legacy. They will carry on to have children and then grandchildren of their own. Have you created roots to leave to your children? Will you leave your mark... or be erased like you never existed?
Like the juxtaposition between reality and perception, there is a big difference between how you would like to be remembered and how you will be remembered!
There is no time to draft a bucket list, the question is as simple as it is reflective, If you died tomorrow, what would you most be remembered for? Have you given it any consideration?