Wow. So. I kinda feel like bawling my eyes out after doing this exercise (How to write your own eulogy). Whew.
I do not need a list of accolades regarding my “successes” or “accomplishments” at my memorial. I do not need awards, rewards, medals due to being super duper awesome at something. I realized today, doing this little project, that all of the activities I’ve ever involved myself with – it was because I craved connection: community theater, running, traveling, fitness, parenting drop in groups, blogging. Each of these individual activities have never been my “passion” – because the PEOPLE were my passion.
She was a bright light to those around her, to me and to anyone she met. (Actual quote from JW, my husband)
I ran a half marathon several years ago. Yea man! Go me! More importantly – I met Kate. We trained for a year together – struggling through winter runs in hail, running up to 18km together to get ready for our race, speed work, hill training, that one time I rolled down a hill – it bonded us deeply. We are now lifelong best friends. I stood with her in her wedding. She was staying at my house the morning I went into labour and met Dorothy that afternoon. The fact that I ran a half marathon is not something that I feel is truly important to speak of at my funeral. Pffft. Who cares. But my friendship with Kate? Yes! Kate being at my funeral/memorial, having kind words to say, sharing memories of our times together, telling funny stories… THAT makes me feel treasured, loved, KNOWN.
I’ve run with some amazing people, but have never “won” a race. I may have never became a “star” doing community theater… But man, I have met beautiful people. Smart, funny, entertaining people. I was a girl guide leader for two years and met GREAT women through girl guides (Maaaaybe the girls remember me as well? LOL) I had a rockin’ size 6 toned bod before getting pregnant because I was training at the gym like a beast with Nicole, my personal trainer. No one is going to remember me for my size 6 (or my size 10) body, but the friendship that I formed with Nicole – that was important.
It’s the friendships along the way that were important!
Amanda always had a kind word to say, showing true empathy. She was a true optimist. She tried to see the positive in all situations, while attempting to also be a practical problem solver. I gotta say, though, she had a tendency to be BLUNT – which could be hilarious most times! (What I hope people say! *snicker*)
Writing my eulogy helped me get focus. I don’t care to be remembered for my deeds or accomplishments, my education or “work”. I’ve been running around the last couple of months searching for meaningful work… a way to connect with my community in a way that makes me feel like a contributing citizen. These past couple of days have helped me unpack that a bit more – do I need paid work to feel like a contributing citizen? Does my ego need the “professional title” associated with “work”. I genuinely feel I’m making the world a better place facilitating the Roots of Empathy program, teaching children to be empathetic citizens. I’m involved in provincial politics with my husband. I’m spreading messages of wellness through my blog. THAT is meaningful work, right??? It’s enough.
I am enough.
Amanda was a good mother. She loved Dottie SO much. That love will live on in Dottie’s heart, her memories, and the stories that she will share with her father, her brother, family and friends. (and nooooooow I’m sobbing *tears*)
Best of all – I’m raising a fabulous little person. I’m honoring her light every day and we’re having a GREAT time. If I were to die a month from now, a year from now, ten years from now – I want to be remembered first as Amanda, Dottie’s Mum.
So I leave you now with my take away – my plans/goals to connect more with my village: my family and friends. Spending time in New Brunswick with my mother and Dottie is super important to me. Dottie loves her Grammie. When I’m home, I love seeing my aunts, uncles, and cousins. BUT – I hate the phone y’all. I’ve developed a true aversion to phone calls. Last week, I had a LOVELY chat with my aunt for over a half hour. I thought to myself, I really should be doing this more – you never know how much time you have with those you love.
SO! New goal!
- Once a week, I will have a phone date with one family member and one friend.
- Once a week, I will call my mother.
Here’s a little video about connection and it’s importance!
If you haven’t seen Brené Brown’s TedTalks or read her books,
get out there and do so NOW!
Until next time
Amanda – Long may I live!