In Twenty Years What Should The World Say About You
One day I was sitting in a training classroom for work. The lights dimmed. A movie shot up on the screen. I watched an old man sitting at a table surrounded by his family, wearing a birthday hat. He was smiling, holding his grandkids on his lap, and listening to the stories everyone was sharing around the table. The stories were of him, about him, the things he did in his life that meant something to others. It was his 80th birthday. And everyone he loved was there to celebrate.
I let myself get caught up in the emotion, feeling the love, the positive attitude and the loyalty conveyed in these stories. The background music was good too, something wordless and happy. But then the screen shifted, and a man’s voice interjected over the birthday party.
The man said, “How do you want to be remembered at your 80th birthday?”
He went on to talk about the decisions we make. The consequences both good and bad, and I had a light bulb moment.
Am I doing the things I feel good about? How do I want the people I love to remember me when I’m gone?
I’m not here to bring anyone down today. What I am here asking is, are you doing the things that matter to you? Are you being the person you want to be remembered by, at your 80th birthday? For me, I took a hard look at my two kids and I wondered: when they’re grown and doing their own thing, what will they say about me as a mother?
Now if you’ve seen my house, you’ll know my answer in not, “my mom was the best housekeeper in the world.” <LOL, though I’m not horrible either>
What I would want them to say about me is this: “My mom loved us. She played with us. And she taught us to catch our dreams.”
So sometimes mistakes seem so big in the moment. Maybe they are, but maybe in twenty years they won’t matter. What matters is what you learn. What you teach. And how you act.