photo credit Cindy Andrie
Most people, if and when they think about leaving a legacy, think in terms of bequeathing money or valuables. But there’s something else you can leave behind that will benefit your children and their children and the generations to come.
And that’s your Story. Oh, how I wish I knew the stories behind the faces that stare up at me from the old photos I’ve inherited. I wish I knew what their childhoods were like, what they valued and who they looked up to. I know the few tales that were passed along by my parents but those are mostly facts about what happened to whom and when. I want to know how those people felt.
I’m reading a wonderful book that I hope will help me give my own future family something more to go on. It’s called The Legacy Guide: Capturing the Facts, Memories and Meaning of Your Life. The authors say, “It’s your experience, the details of your journey, that’s your real legacy…Let the children of your children know you as a person, so they can know themselves. Let them learn from your experience. Let them benefit from what you’ve worked so hard to understand. And, not least, give yourself the satisfaction of seeing your life whole.”
What I like best about the book is that it divides one’s life into stages, so no matter where you are in the process, you can distill the facts and memories that will allow you to derive meaning. The authors ask the questions and you can answer those that seem pertinent. Put together, you eventually have a notebook or a scrapbook or a memoir to hand down.
This seems to be an original and innovative approach and I’d be interested in hearing from anyone else who is working their way through The Legacy Guide.