“Kelly, what will your legacy be?”
That question as posed to me recently at work. We had a department-wide meeting during which we made a “legacy quilt”. We were each charged to write a sentence on a square of decorative paper which would be knit together to form a paper quilt of quotes and desires.
That’s all the space we had!
I’ve practiced occupational therapy for a decade. I was in grad school for years. I have worked with hundreds of patients of all ages and I just get one sentence to encompass all of that?!
As a writer, this was an especially challenging task– after all, words are my friends! I want to use them, as many as possible! I wasted several sheets trying to write the longest, most hyphenated, run-on sentence ever created in order to jam pack the more ideas into my small paper square.
But that’s not what I really wanted. Medical jargon doesn’t change lives. My skills and metrics are important and I should consistently work on them, but they aren’t my legacy. My employment epitaph shall not read, “Kelly knew every trigger point release in the upper trunk.”
It shall not read, “Kelly achieved productivity every day.”
It shall not read, “Kelly read more peer-reviewed articles than anyone else in the department.”
No. I finally knew what I wanted my legacy quilt to say. It was so simple, I don’t know why I’d tried to hard to write such a complicated sentence! In the end my paper simply read, “Life Matters.”
That’s what I want my legacy to be. People are important. People have dignity. People are made in the Image of God and are worthy of my best efforts every day. I want this to be true for every infant, child, family member, coworker and person with whom I interact.
Hello, dear reader. You are important! You matter!
“The future is purchased by the present.” Dr. Samuel Johnson
What will your legacy be?