A good friend of mine who has been the spark of many of my recent self-realization posts just offered me a challenge. Well she frequently challenges me to be a better me, but this time it was a specific challenge. Basically she suggested that I write a Eulogy for myself written from another person’s perspective. How would I want someone to eulogize the me that I hope to become? How do I want to be remembered? Now I have done something like this before (I thought it was posted on this site but I can’t find it) but it was done from my own perspective. I think this is a great exercise, so I am giving it a try. Here goes:
Hello all! I have the privilege of being the first to send off a great friend, and I am truly honored for the opportunity. I was going to say how surprised I am that there are not more people physically here, but recalling the fact that Steve was such a wandering soul, there is no way all the people he touched throughout the world could easily come in person. Fortunately the wonders of technology have taken care of that!
You might be a little taken aback by my seeming cheeriness considering why we are here. This is by intent. Steve would rather we be happy for the joy he brought us in life than sad because he has moved on to the final great adventure! And that is exactly how he viewed it.
So what to say about Steve? He wouldn’t want me to pull any punches so I won’t. Steve was far from a perfect human being. He would have been the first to admit that. He made mistakes. He could be stubborn, sometimes to a fault. But the simple truth of the matter is we all have our flaws. What truly defines a person is how we deal with our flaws, and those of others. That is something Steve taught me. Possibly the greatest compliment you could have ever given him is “You taught me something!”
Who was Steve? That is something we each have to answer for ourselves. He treated everyone with respect and kindness, and few who crossed paths with him did not take something from the encounter. His impact may not have been something felt by millions, yet he managed to help make the world a better place by helping and encouraging those who had the power to effect mass change. Steve was not easily defined. He often referred to himself as a “change agent”, and that seems like a good description of who he was. He chose to leave his mark on the world not by becoming famous, or amassing a great fortune, but by simply being the helping hand for those who had great dreams. He viewed himself as the ultimate “stage hand”; there behind the scenes, helping ensure that the show went on and was ultimately a success. He was always happy knowing he had a hand in something great happening, even if few actually knew he had anything to do with it.
Steve will live on in my memory, and I believe in yours, not for his ready laugh, or his talent for finding the beauty in everything and truly embracing the moment, but for the simple fact that he encouraged me to think on my own; to follow my dreams and to believe in myself. He also taught me that nothing is impossible. As he always said, “The ‘impossible’ just takes a little longer!”
So instead of morning his loss, laugh with me, and remember Steve in the way that would honor him best. If he taught you something, then share the lesson. If he helped you achieve a dream then do the same for others. Remember him by continuing to help make the world a better place, even if only one person at a time.
This exercise was tougher than I though, and took me several days (when I usually can do a post in an hour or less). I am not even sure I did it justice. But it is a great idea. Truly helps define how we see our life going in the future. You should give it a try!