Think of your life and compare it to a finely crafted timepiece.
We all have to deal with our morality and how we might be remembered. We only get a finite amount of time on this earth; the answer most of us will never know is when our time is up.
In my Mom and Dad’s home they had many timepieces; the one I remember the best was a clock from Germany. It was a glass domed cover clock; the clock was designed for you to view the inside of the clock and how it worked. (similar to the one pictured below)
“There is always a sense of awe when a clock that has been silent for many years or decades is ticking strongly again. The stories it could tell.” Allan Symons, Curator, The Canadian Clock Museum.
Your Legacy; Silence or Great Stories?
Part of Merriam-Webster Definition of Legacy is; “Something that happened in the past or that comes from someone in the past.”
Part of The Free Dictionary’s Legacy Definition is; “Something handed down from an ancestor or a predecessor or the past: a legacy of religious freedom. See Synonyms at heritage.”
My Mom and Dad passed away recently and even with their silence from this world; fond memories resurface to remind me of their time on this earth.
From a material standpoint, my Mom and Dad left each of their grandchildren and great-grandchildren; a substantial amount of funds in their RESP; Registered Education Savings Plan. Most of their material wealth came from the sale of their home.
But my Mom and Dad’s legacy is much more than money.
It has been a rough few years as I continue to deal with my parents worldly possessions. The toughest thing is dealing with items that had significant meaning to my folks but don’t play a role in our lives.
Every once in a while I unearth a treasure amongst my parents’ possessions, and it takes me on a journey I would never dream of.
Several months ago I came across two boxes labeled clocks; one clock was the domed clock I mentioned above; this clock had a real connection for my brother to my parents and our Canadian Armed Forces life in Germany. After years of silence this clock again tics and tocs in my brother’s home and revives stories for my brother and his family of a joyful past.
My brother is a great storyteller, and this clock is now creating “Awe” again.
This clock now serves another generation of our family and is on display for other generations of my brother’s family.
The other clock I referred deserves a story all to itself, and it will be my pleasure to share this story with you an upcoming blog post; this clock transcends generations of our family and reaches back over a century.
How is Your Legacy Going to Serve Your Memory?
When I think of the Indigenous People of North America and the great storytellers of their past generations; many of the incredible storytellers of their cultures were their elders.
This storytelling art form is taking on different shapes in today’s digital world, but it is our challenge as elders of our generation to preserve the family and cultural stories of our past.
If you think of yourself as to young to be an elder; think again because every day your family and culture create memories, these become yours to pass on.
A Living Legacy is built into family heirlooms, but it is the stories that live on beyond our physical selves. It is essential you look around your environment and see if certain items can live on without your physical presence.
The biggest opportunity for the memory of your life and the legacy you would like to preserve is to tie family and cultural stories into individual items. These items need not be expensive; just significant to you and how you weave your family and cultural stories into these items.
For my brother and I (we are our only siblings) I don’t think my parent’s consciously considered leaving two clocks behind that would have the significance again in our lives.
Don’t let time slip away without taking a moment to tie significance to an item or items that are attached to stories of your life; learn to build stories that can live on forever.
If you want to learn more about the thought process in questioning and dealing with your legacy take some time and listen to the following podcast; The Remarkable Value of a Living Legacy.