For a long time, I never thought I was worthy of a legacy.
And therefore, I’d never given much thought to the idea of it. I always kind of figured that death is the great end, and outside of a few lucky people in this world, once your family and friends are gone, memory of you ceases to be. But we now live in a world where the things we put out may live forever so maybe it’s time to reconsider this notion. If I could google my grandfather’s name and read his Facebook, Medium, or interviews that he had given, I would probably feel much more connected and might have a much clearer version of his legacy to give you.
I think that legacies are rooted in values and beliefs. Values and beliefs come from many different influences in our lives. The beginning of it is our parents, and I hit the jackpot in that department. I have parents whose legacy will be kindness, love, and giving of self and will continue on in the lives of my kids, even after I’m gone. As we age and grow, other influences begin to play a role, that of friendships, books, new learnings, and eventually, if one is lucky enough, that of a partner. So values and beliefs shift and I’m no different than many of you in that mine have shifted since I was young, and I hope that continues throughout my entire life. I think the more you learn and grow, the more you should allow your values and beliefs to shift.
So to nail down today what I hope my legacy is when I die is a tough thing to properly see, as I think I’ve got a lot of learning and growing left to do in my life. But one day, when my kids put on their Oculus Rift and tiny lasers play out scenes of my life on their eyeballs, I hope that a few things they understand about me are my love of love, kindness, and giving. And burritos, I love burritos.
But I can’t control this. I can’t control how my kids see me after I’m gone (except when they’re young, they’re so weak minded when they’re young), anymore than I can control how they or others see me while I’m alive. In the past I was very concerned with what others thought of me but I’ve since let that go, and now I’m only concerned with my actions and my authenticity. So it would make sense that I need to let go of what my kids will think of me after I’m gone, if I can keep my values and beliefs in mind while I’m focusing on what’s important to me, I think my legacy will take care of itself.