How will any of us be remembered?
It’s a question I rarely ask myself. But I thought about it today as I attended an event to honor an 80-year old woman who has been called out for her accomplishments by various city, county, state, and national government bodies and private organizations over the years. She’s been Woman of the Year so many times I’ve lost count. Today’s lovefest was standing room only, the inaugural Hal Brown Women Leading Change Award (named for a deceased Marin County Supervisor and given by the Marin Women’s Commission) and everyone agreed, with a good deal of laughter, that my friend was the logical choice.
She retired from the position of founding director of Parent Services Project several years ago, but “retirement” is a relative term with her. She always has a good cause to tell you about, an exciting initiative in childhood education or parent leadership she wants you to support, a social benefit event that will bring people together around shared objectives, a funny story to tell, someone she urgently wants you to meet, someone wonderful, someone she’s thrilled to know. Where other people see barriers and strangers, she sees opportunities and new friends. If she slows down, it must be between midnight and seven a.m. because she sure doesn’t during the rest of the 24-hour day.
She is vigorous, happy, embracing life and new adventures at 80. It’s easy to remember her because at any moment, I may get an affectionate email and a reminder that such-and-such event is taking place and wouldn’t I like to drop by and meet a wonderful woman doing great work on behalf of young people in the community?
One thing I don’t think she does is worry a whole lot about how she’ll be remembered after she’s gone from the Earth. For now, there are more important things, more challenges, always more life to relish.
Ethel Seiderman, I’m proud to be among your universe of friends and consider you an ideal to be lived up to, someone who will let the future, and how you’ll be remembered, take care of itself while you glory in the living of each day. Mazel tov, my friend!