But you can improve your corner.â€
Yesterday I picked up a dear friend and we went to the memorial service for another mutual dear friend. It seems to me that it isnâ€™t until a personâ€™s memorial service that you gain a greater picture of what their live held, and oftentimes even regret never having had a chance to talk with them about this or that facet, but my experience with this woman was echoed in the words of one of the speakers, â€œthis personâ€™s very breath was kindness.â€
She was what I would consider in many ways a wealthy woman. Her granddaughter read from a letter she wrote to her future husband, probably while he was away in the war, in which she told him that she felt nowhere as comfortable and safe as in his arms or beside him, of how much she loved him, and of all the things they would do together and all the fun they would have â€“ picnics, dances, mountain climbing, skating and many more. By all accounts they had that love for the next fifty years, and they raised five children together. To find your best friend, that person who time away from is time wasted and then have the joy of children with that person is certainly the greatest emotion Iâ€™ve known in my life. In her later years she wrote, â€œWhat is a person? What is a life but all the experiences you have and what you have left when they have gone. My legacy is my children. I have to stay as close to them as I can without smothering them. And I have to clean out these closetsâ€¦â€
Her husband became a senator and many described how she was a strong and unceasing proponent of active and strong government. Several fifty year olds remembered wearing hand-lettered tee shirts at the county fair that said, â€œVote for my dad.â€ Several of the names in attendance have buildings named for them in our community and several spoke of very real and concrete initiatives and drives she had been behind.
After the children were raised, gone, and the grandchildren started coming back and political life receded somewhat, she had thirty years that she devoted in a large part in her art and supporting the local art community. She was one of the founding members of the local artistâ€™s cooperative gallery. She has inspired uncounted younger artists to persevere and her work hangs in offices and homes of many in our community and beyond it.
As I looked around the large room at all the faces that were there for one reason I found inspiration. Love the ones you love. Donâ€™t waste the time or hand youâ€™ve been dealt. Keep trying. Keep playing. Go around obstacles. Donâ€™t take yourself too seriously.