I just got home from Seattle. The purpose of our quick trip was to memorialize my husband's beloved 96-year-old grandmother, Jane Newman, who passed away recently.
At the service, close family members shared their fondest memories of this hell-on-wheels dynamo of a lady. And while each anecdote varied in its detail, every one shared the coolest common themes about Jane:
- Ferragamos - Seriously? Is there any woman on this planet that does not want to go down as the amazing lady who click-click-clicked around EVERYWHERE in fabulous designer heels, well into her 80s? No, no there is not.
- Independence and Adventure - While Jane was married for years, to a man I never met but am told completely adored her, she was as independent and adventurous as they come - She was college-educated (Purdue), a global traveler, and worked as a top sales person for Rubbermaid well into her '70s. Yes, in her Ferragamos. Of course in her Ferragamos.
- Cocktail Party Elegance - Down-to-earth and genuine at heart all the while, Jane made her cocktail hours near-ritual, convening regularly for drinks with family and friends. And we're not talking Bud Light on the couch in sweats. People, puh-lease. For Jane, cocktail hour meant real libations, real conversation and meticulous style. Think Mad Men.
As I listened along to each story, I found myself smiling. As someone who only had a few years to get to know this fab lady, I knew she was a Force (capital F intended), but the memorial service gave everything I'd detected about Jane this grand, wonderful exclamation mark.
Jane made her mark. A big one.
And the world will remember and appreciate Jane Newman for her style, her zest for life and her near-astounding ability to clatter around in high-heels into the twilight of her life.
I decided something right then and there. I decided that one day, I want to be memorialized Jane Newman style.
I decided that I want to be remembered as a Force (capital F intended). A fiesty, fierce, full-of-life Force.
And I assure you, I will make it my mission to live up to the legacy I envison.
So what about you? How do you want to be remembered?
What are you doing (or not doing) today to ensure that this comes to fruition?
Whether you're conscious of it or not, you're a brand. YOU. Are a brand.
Do absolutely everything you can to go down as a spectacular one.
Godspeed, Jane Newman. We raise a collective glass and shall miss you dearly.
(But WHY could we not be the same shoe size ....!?) ;)
Photo by: Steph Barcenas