A few weeks ago my grandmother passed away. She lived to be almost 86. I was lucky enough to be able to travel home for the funeral. It was good for me to be there with my family and take part in all the standard Midwesterner funeral arrangements. I hate funerals. However, I can’t deny there is something about the ceremony that helps with the grieving process.
What I want to talk about today is the message that was delivered by my grandmother’s pastor. He talked about her life using words that she had written. You see my grandmother wrote her own obituary. He laughed, and then said she knew he wouldn’t get it right. It made me smile since I knew that it was true. She was a very particular woman, and I could almost hear her whispering everything he was doing wrong in my ear.
He used the words that she had kindly provided and some of his own to paint a picture of her life from birth in a small town until her death in that same town. That outside perspective gave me a window into her life that I had never had access to before. It is easy to forget sometime that people have large lives in which you only play a small role.
The theme of the message was that each of us starts life with a blank canvas. Our experiences and deeds fill the canvas with colors and shapes that are unique to us. Grandma’s canvas was filled with a long life. She had many experiences including attending class in a one-room-school, raising two children, and giving a lot of love to her grandchildren. She had been active in her church and was a founding member. Her masterpiece was filled with a very colorful life even though she hardly ever left our small town.
The message spoke to me, of course. This website is all about human potential and growth. In my previous post about the death clock I focused on living life to the fullest. It was about making sure when you spend your seconds on anything you get your money’s worth. I realized during the pastors message that my concept of a death clock is only part of the purpose I want to convey. The Woman Warrior Project is much more than a clock counting down to the end. It’s not just about the time counting down on the clock, but the picture I am painting.
If I lived each second to the fullest would that really be enough?
The answer without a doubt is, no. I could do a lot of things with the seconds I have left. When I’m gone I don’t want someone to say, “Wow, she did a lot of things.” I want to leave my loved ones with the memory of a beautiful masterpiece filled with amazing shapes and colors.
I think my masterpiece is just starting to become something beautiful.
If you stood back and looked at your masterpiece today what would it look like?