On Friday, I joined my dad at a memorial service for family friends. The service was attended by over 700 people. Family, friends and even those who only knew these folks as voices on the radio came to pay their last respects to a husband and wife that had dedicated their lives to whatever God would have them do.
As I sat listening to the grandchildren relate stories of their grandparents, friends remembering the best of two people that meant the world to them, I could not help but turn my thinking to my own life and my own children.
Who would they remember?
How would they remember these years of transition, not only mine, but theirs as well?
What would their emotions be in years to come as they look back?
With an impending divorce, will this adversely affect them or will they come out of this time in their lives as stronger individuals?
What will be important to my kids as they look back at my life and our life together?
Will it be that I write a blog for ChicagoNow?
Will it be that I co-wrote a blog for Huffington Post?
Will it be the time my photography was on display at the local library?
Will it be that I have stood up for equal rights?
When it comes to our travels through my transition . . . .
Will they remember the deep depression I was caught in for years as a guy or the confident out going woman that I am today?
Will the times I isolated myself from them take precedence or the recent trips to Chicago, riding the train as a family and enjoying a lunch by the Lake Michigan be more prominent in their thoughts?
What about the times looking for snakes and frogs in the local forest preserves? Will they rule over the days and sometimes weeks of separation from each other?
These questions and MANY more often flow like a raging river through me in my lonely nights. Granted, most of these questions are not unique to just those of us that go through this transition. Many of these questions are common among most parents.
As much as we like to think, No one can answer any of these questions for our children.
It is my hope and my prayer that my children use these events as building blocks, both the good and bad, as they construct their own foundation as they grow and build their own lives in this world.
Many people think about what their 'legacy' is in this world.
With all of these questions lingering in my mind, there is one last one that guilds me every day. What do I want my legacy to look like? That question I CAN answer . . . .For my daughter to say "I'm proud to be her daughter" and my son to say "I'm proud to be her son."