I listened to a training exercise by Jody Day recently where she talked about the difficulties that childless women face when it comes to finding meaning in our lives as we do not have children to share our wisdom with or pass down our belongs to. I know that for me, one of the desires of becoming a mum was to have a daughter (yes I was going to have a girl) that I could teach the importance of loving herself and to pass on my bracelet handed down to me by my aunty and a crucifix that my dad had given to me when I was a little girl.
Not having children that I can leave my most prized possessions to is a part of my grief that is probably easier for others to comprehend but until now I never really considered what that legacy truly meant. During Jody’s message she mentioned that our legacy is;
- for others to decide and
- is the difference we make to people while we are here.
I have never considered the fact that my presence in the world may have made it an easier for someone else, on any particular day, could be seen as my legacy, but on reflection I realise what a beautiful gift that kind word, that helping hand, that unexpected hug when it was most needed, the laughs we share, can mean in someone else’s life. Reflecting on this reminded me of the day I was returning to work after my lunch break. An elderly lady caught my attention and asked if I was going to my car. She mentioned that she was looking for a lift to the bus stop so that she could get home. I retrieved my car keys from my office and walked her to my car. During the conversation I realised that she lived close to where I work and so offered to drive her home. To me this was a small gesture to her it meant the world. Thinking back on this it is lovely to realise that I will be remembered by that lady as that kind girl that helped her out that day. And my dear friend, Anita, reminds me of the wisdom, love and laughter that we share with each other and receiving gifts from her shows me that I am an important part of her life.
Dawn, who I meet a few weeks ago, messaged me yesterday saying “You are a gift to anyone that knows you”. Remembering these moments has evoked such an emotion in me that I am crying as I write this blog.
Prior to today I had been saddened by the prospect of not being able to leave something behind to be remembered by my children but now I have the joy of knowing that I give the gift of me to everyone I come across and am able to share a special moment with them (no matter how small). What a beautiful legacy to leave behind!!!