Do you ever think about your “legacy”? No, I don’t either. That’s for presidents and kings. For the rest of us, I think we want to be remembered kindly as having lived a good life. It’s not something that one spends time dwelling on, as a rule.
It was a couple of weeks ago and I was in trouble. My breathing was getting shallower, I was dizzy and I wasn’t terribly sure that I was going to live to see my next birthday, less than a week away. My friend Lois was on her way to take me to the hospital.
So, going to the hospital … what do you take? Even though I wasn’t thinking clearly (but then do I ever?) I had the presence of mind to gather a few things: phone charger (essential in this day and age!), bedroom slippers, a mystery to pass the time — if I lived that long — a notebook, toothbrush, Bible lesson. I sat at the dining room table looking around and then I saw something that made me catch my breath in horror. Oh NO! Dishes in the sink! Dirty dishes. I had not washed all day.
As I sat and watched, they began to glow with an eerie blue light … pulsing and increasing in size and quantity. Was I hallucinating or were they actually glowing? No, it was my imagination, my mind looking into the future. I have lived on this earth for 3/4 of a century and after all those years, this will likely be what I’m remembered for.
Whatever good I had done, whatever friends I had made, if there was any life-changing wisdom I had imparted as I journeyed down the Road of Life, it would all be over-shadowed by this act of negligence. Now let’s be clear, there are often dishes in my sink. I usually get around to washing them by the end of the day; I figure they’re not hurting anything. And (please don’t tell anyone else) sometimes I let them accumulate for TWO days! (Horrors!)
And now my life has come down to this one thing. I can just hear it now:
“Did you know that when she died, she actually left dirty dishes in her sink?” “No!” “Yes, it’s true. I heard it from someone who talked to a person who knew somebody who had actually seen them!”
So how’s that for a legacy?
Mother would be so ashamed.