Tuesday, September 11, 2012

A little chicken soup ....


Do you recall the marvelous film adaptation of "Bridges of Madison County"?   Whether one agrees (or not) with its theme ... I was struck by Francesca's son and daughter's reaction upon reading their mother's journals after her death.  (We never knew .....)

Her prose seemed effortless -- dreams and disappointments laid bare, as if to say, "This. This is who I was."

Yes, I know "Bridges" is a work of fiction.
But some days ... well, most days, I second-guess my decision to blog....
rejecting ordinary moments as "unimportant" ... or worse, hitting that "publish" button before indulging in a therapeutic cooling-off period! :))

What's it all about, Alfie?

Then ... BAM!!!   Out of no-where, I had my answer:

Like so many of you, I'm a huge fan of the "Chicken Soup for the Soul" series.   Like a laser-beam, one story was so (personally) powerful, I wrote the publisher, requesting permission to excerpt a portion*.  

She said 'Yes'!!!
So, without further ado ...

The author, Tony D'Angelo, recalls a collegiate Philosophy class ....

"Respond to the following questions by a show of hands," my professor instructed.

"How many of you can tell me something about your parents?"  Everyone's hand went up.

"How many of you can tell me something about your grandparents?"  About three-fourths of the class raised their hands.

"How many of you can tell me something about your great-grandparents?"  Two out of sixty students raised their hands.

"Look around the room," he said.  "In just two short generations hardly any of us even know who our own great-grandparents were.  Oh sure, maybe we have an old, tattered photograph tucked away in a musty cigar box or know the classic family story about how one of them walked five miles to school barefoot.  But how many of us really know who they were, what they thought, what they were proud of, what they were afraid of, or what they dreamed about?   Think about that.  Within three generations our ancestors are all but forgotten.  Will this happen to you?

"Here's a better question.  Look ahead three generations  You are long gone.  Instead of you sitting in this room, now it's your great-grandchildren.  What will they have to say about you?  Will they know about you?  Or will you be forgotten, too?

"Is your life going to be a warning or an example?  What legacy will you leave?   The choice is yours.  Class dismissed."




___________________________________________
*From the book Chicken Soup for the Soul: Grand and Great 
by Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen and Amy Newmark
Copyright 2008 by Chicken Soup for the Soul Publishing, LLC.  Published by Chicken Soup for the Soul Publishing, LLC.
Chicken Soup for the Soul is a registered trademark of Chicken Soup for the Soul Publishing, LLC.  Reprinted by permission.  All rights reserved.

8 comments:

  1. HI MEVERLY,
    NO....Never stop blogging!!I love your blog!!!
    I also love those books....I own several.
    And what a great question.....WOW.....I hope I leave some sort of fingerprint on the lives of my Children and Grand children that in say 30 or 40 years they will KNOW what I stood for, what I hoped for......I will make sure I leave an impression or ink stain on them now!!
    hugs,
    jamie

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  2. You better not quit - I really have enjoyed your blog - talking with you - and your support.

    You know a couple bloggers have articles in Chicken Soup for the Soul if you want their sites.

    HUGS!

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  3. So glad we have discovered one another's blogs thanks to Sandie (Chatty). I am a CS writer, 17 books, and after reading several of your blog posts, I can see that we are kindred spirits. I enjoy your posts. Thanks for signing on to follow mine.

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  4. I agree with the gals above...love your blog, darling! You always make me think. I think of legacy often since just losing my mom in January. I went out and purchased journals for all my siblings and encouraged them to share who they really are (like my mom's journals that made us smile.) Wonder if any "bridges" will pop up for us to read?

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  5. Add me to the list. I would be devastated if you ever stopped blogging.

    I have considered the about thoughts before. I am one that never knew great-grandparents and never knew my grandparents on my mothers side of the family. Plus, neither side of my family bothered to keep any written records of our ancestors and a cousin has spent years trying to find any scrap in the public domain.

    While I can't get my own family to read my blog I am comforted that perhaps some stranger for a far distant galaxy will in some future millennium stumble on one of my better post or snippet of brilliance and be inspired.

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  6. wow...this really hit me. I can see why you wanted to post it and I'm so glad you did. In fact...I'm going to share it today with my friend....it's made a difference to me too. Hugs to you. Have a great weekend out there okay...

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  7. I love your blog so please stay here! I like those Chicken Soup books too! This was a powerful story. I knew my great grandfathers story on my moms side and my dads grandparents too but it is sad. WE have a new baby in the phamily. My niece Kate and her hubby Jason welcomed Zander Liam today! He will join big sis Ari! My folks would have loved it! You see Ari and Zander are two of twenty great grads for my late folks! I love it!
    Have a terrific week! Hugs Anne

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  8. Oh, what a beautiful post, and very meaningful part of a CS story. Since I've just met you (again thanks to Miss Chatty Crone!)I'm just now reading your blog...and it looks wonderful. Please don't stop writing! I'll be back as often as possible! :)
    (PS I thought I'd already signed on to follow you, but guess not....so I just did!)

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Thanks so much for dropping by! Your words are like hugs from afar.... and who doesn't love a hug!