Mark Twain

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do ...
Explore. Dream. Discover." Mark Twain

Monday, April 18, 2011

O - is for Obituary

So tomorrow is my birthday - officially 64.
Yea! Me!
And I thought - why not write my Obituary!

I can hear the chorus of readers now!!

"HEAVENS," you say, "why would you want to do that? Isn't that depressing? morbid? odd? premature?"

Yes, I am hoping it is premature. :-) And it may be a little unusual. But a resounding NO to the other stuff! Not depressing or morbid.

I consider it a reality check. My obituary is what I want people to know about me - and remember me for after I am gone, AND, creating it now gives me a chance to see just how close I am to those things. I mean, if I died tomorrow ... would I be able to use this Obituary!!!

According to Wikipedia an obituary is:
A news story that reports the recent death of a person, typically along with an account of the person's life and information about the upcoming funeral.

The part I have problems with is "an account of the person's life". People always take that to mean the following:
  • Where were they born?
  • Where did they live during their life?
  • Where did they live at the time of their death?
  • Where did they go to school and what degrees did they attain?
  • What did they do professionally?
  • What awards did they achieve?
  • What hobbies did they have?
  • Who survives them?
Bor - ing!

Really, who cares about that stuff after you are dead. Think about it. Strangers reading the newspaper don't care where you went to school, what degrees you were awarded, how professionally stacked you are - I mean, used to be! And your family already knows this stuff. And the deceased person - is that really how they want to be remembered - with an impersonal listing of accomplishments? Yes, I have an advanced degree, yes, I had responsible jobs. Yes, I had some worthwhile achievements - No,I don't care to share them. They are just not who I am.


Here is how I want "the account of my life" to be remembered. The black bold print are the actual words I want to use in my Obituary. The blue and red print is my assessment of how close I am to the words.

Elaine
(aka Retired Knitter)
:-)
Born: xx/xx/xx
Died: xx/xx/xx
(Dates should equal out to a nice age like say 35,
or maybe something note worthy like 110.
My Obituary - my rules!)

Daughter, Wife, Mother, Friend
(maybe someday Grandmother could be added
hope, hope, hope)

Always Loved
That one I nailed. I love easily.
Makes it easy to hurt me as a result.

Always Laughed
Blessed with the happiness gene.
Seems whatever plows me down, I get back to happy eventually.
Some times it takes longer than others to recover, but it is my "norm".

Always Cared
I have done my care-giving best for 3 elderly relatives. I have cared for 2 great kids
and they turned out pretty fabulous. Just ask them!
I have cared for my husband and family - even when they acted badly.
I was not always perfect in the caring department, but I "walked the talk" most certainly.

Learned Patience
Not when it counts. My mother tests this quality every single day.

Learned Forgiveness
Forgiving a hurt is very, very hard for me.
I am pretty good at "forgetting", but "forgiving"?
Tough one.

Learned Trust
I used to trust without restraint.
Not so much anymore. Got burned.
Another toughie.

Most Happy When Knitting or Sitting With My Granddogs.


Most Proud Of Her Kids
Can't improve on that.


So until I can rid of all that red print, I can't use this Obituary - and I can't die.

And, besides, I have enough yarn to last me until I am 94 - another 30 years. I'll be sticking around. (or at least until my next birthday, whichever comes first.)

Oh, wait, that is tomorrow!!!





11 comments:

  1. What a wonderful post and a great idea! Let's hope you get it on paper so someone can carry it through for you.

    Hello, fellow A-Z Challenger! Here's my latest entry. Come visit either of my blogs when you can and leave some comment love:

    M is for Mindmapping/Full View Outline

    http://www.mainstreamsolarcooking.com
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    Twitter: @SolarChief

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  2. Sounds like you were a really nice person, I wish I'd known you (chuckle). You know what, it's too bad you have to waste a terrific obit on a dead person. We should have birthday obits so everyone could know how great we are while we are still alive.

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  3. Well, I would argue about you being patient, you may FEEL inpatient but you manage to ACT patient. That counts! Love you, Linda

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  4. Great idea for a post. Your forgot one other person who you are. FRIEND
    I like mybabyjohn's idea.
    See you tomorrow.

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  5. Thanks guys.

    Linda, you are right - I can ACT (minor in drama in college), but inside I am not patient at all.

    And Happyone: I did mange to forget FRIEND - I am proud to be friends with so many wonderful and different people. I am going to amend this posting right this minute!!

    See, that is what is great about writing and publishing your own obit - in advance - you can get in-put!!!!! :-)

    My readers are the best!!!

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  6. hi Elaine:)

    ...must admit that when i saw your topic for the O i did a double take! thought along this line as well and even have thought of conducting it myself. pre-recorded....lol. play my own music and let`m all parrty afterwards.

    hey, i thought maybe my idea was totally off the wall till i read this, this morning!:) nice to know there's others around that think like this:) have a wonderful day!

    it's a pleasure getting to know you and other new friends in this challenge.

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  7. Although it's morbid, it's good-to-know info. Especially since I will not be at your funeral. I will be buried in the casket with you...and the dogs...and your yarn stash! ;)

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  8. what a great post! this is a very smart move to write your own obituary--you get the option of writing what other people want to read. :)great meeting you through the a-z!
    nutschell
    www.thewritingnut.com

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  9. What a cute and surprisingly touching post. Hope you have a fabulous birthday! Happy, happy day! :)

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  10. So love your blog !!
    We have an award for you ...Pick it up @ Dodge Writes
    ENJOY !
    JL&B

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  11. Frenchie Mom

    It is not morbid at all.

    You can't be in the casket with me 'cause there won't be a casket.

    You see, I plan to be cremated and my ashes spread at the MD Sheep and Wool Festival - discreetly, of course, because I don't think that is allowed. Where ever they set up the Brooks Farm Yarn stand - drop me there. I need you to do that ... your dad and brother won't. They don't even know where the Howard County Fair Grounds are!! :-)

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