You haven’t painted a master piece or penned a best selling novel. You didn’t make waves as a Grammy winning artist. You didn’t make an important medical or scientific discovery. Your name is not in magazines nor will it be in any history books. So, what happens when you leave this place? Your life story will not become a feature film. There will no be street named after you. And so you sit and you wonder – did I leave my mark in life?
The answer, I suppose, depends entirely on what leaving a mark means to you. From the outside looking in I can tell you, without any hesitation, without any attempt at trying to flatter or placate you, that you have left more than a mark.
I have called you a friend for many years. I don’t see you often. We don’t talk on the phone or even exchange emails. But none of that matters. What does matter is that from the moment I met you I liked you. And I suspect there are so many more people – friends – out there that would say the same. You have that quality that just makes people instantly fall in love with you. If we take a look at our circle of friends we can generally, if asked, find a word to describe each of them. The funny one. The smart one. The strong one. The unpredictable one. But there are those friends that you cannot possibly pick out their one best or dominant feature. That is you. You ARE the funny one, the smart one, the strong one, the unpredictable one, and on and on. To say you leave an impression on everyone you meet is an understatement.
I listen and I read the words that are being put out there right now by your friends and even though my heart is sad it is also so full in the knowledge that you are so surrounded by love. Deep, raw and ever lasting love. Every single word that is uttered comes from that love. So, what does it mean to make your mark? Is it the depth and quantity of the footprints you imprint on this earth or is it more relevant and meaningful to accept and embrace the realization that those foot prints will never, and can’t ever be filled? That you have walked into so many lives and those footprints are forever embedded in those lives. And that every single person is eternally grateful for that.
It doesn’t matter what you do, so long as you change something from the way it was before you touched it into something that’s like you after you take your hands away.”
This is a quote from Fahrenheit 451 on leaving your mark. I think it’s just about perfect. Each of us that knows is you is more like you in all the best ways simply by knowing you. You have imparted wisdom, strength and knowledge onto all of us and we carry that with us, using it to make our mark as well.