As I type this, the world is mourning the loss of the great Poet, Author, Civil Rights Leader and Medal of Freedom recipient, Mother Maya Angelou who lived every ounce of her 86 outstanding years. Simultaneously, I am personally mourning the sudden and unexpected death of my Uncle Heril Nelson, who in his 73 years made an indelible impact on my life, down to my adopting his ‘shaved head’ look. And, as incredible as it sounds, I am also sharing in the sudden loss of my 51 year old friend, Bob, whose 80 year old mother, upon hearing news of his death, collapsed and died of a broken heart two days later.
Perhaps you get the sense that I am in deep thought about the brevity of this life, the sudden, immediate and definite changes that can occur in the blink of an eye and most importantly, the necessity of making our days count, instead of merely counting our days.
The world will, no doubt, synchronize its tribute to this saintly woman who singlehandedly contributed so much soul into our multi-culture and caused us to appreciate her courtly wisdom and experience the triumph of her art. Bob, a self employed plumber, was honored by more than 500 people, some who stood out in the rain, in line, for more than two hours to pay honor to him and his family. Although Uncle Heril’s coming memorial may not garner such attention, those of us who will be in attendance will note how he wonderfully inspired and transformed our lives.
What about you?
You may live a long life or your own obituary (or mine) may be in the papers next week. At the end of the day, what contribution will you have made? What will those closest and dearest to you have to say?
Whether your Life & Art impacts millions from all walks of life on many continents or a handful of people gather inside a small church to weep and pray, will they be able to clearly recount that Your Impact, Your Influence, Your Impression, Smile, Quirks, Examples, Lessons and Legacy will continue on in their hearts and minds – and that they are willing to pass your Name & Countenance on to their children and beyond?
It’s not too late…
I was not listening to any music as I typed this – but my neighbor’s lawnmower was a bit distracting…