Have you heard of Mary Oliver? In my humble opinion she is one of the best poets who ever lived. Why? Because she sees the possibilities and vulnerabilities of life in a way that speaks to me and many of her fans. I offer one of her excellent writings that, given my line of work, truly resonates.

Instructions for living a life. 

Pay attention.

Be astonished. 

Tell about it. 

I know my client Jane embraced these instructions. We recently finished her life story book and at 180 pages she most definitely paid attention to the details of her life, was a keen photographer shining the light on people around the world and freely shared her stories. 

With her husband, Jane and their two small children embarked on a career of travel and storytelling with a focus on South America, at a time when few travellers went there. A few years after her husband died, Jane began travelling again however this time it was without small children but often with a large backpack and as always with her camera. 

The title of her book, “It’s been a Remarkable Life” sums up the enthusiasm she has had for the world whether at home or on the other side of the planet. Pay attention. Be astonished. Tell about it. Yes indeed.

Jane has been sharing her legacy book with family and friends who have been astonished to learn so much about someone they thought they knew well. She shared their comments with me, and it has been a delight to read the impact her story has had. You can read many of them here, but I share a few:  

“Mum showed me your book – I was completely blown away by it – the photography, the way it was written and put together with the content were all incredible. Utterly first class!”

“Appreciated reading lots of stories and comments about Dad, especially since so many stories got lost when he didn’t put his own book together.”

“I had known that you have led and continue to lead, an extraordinary life but had no idea just how extraordinary!”

That last sentiment is one I have heard before. We think that people, especially family members know our stories but so often they don’t know the details. 

Another common statement is that stories are lost because someone has died and taken their history, perhaps also your history, with them. Who hasn’t thought of questions they would love to ask a loved one who is now gone. 

This isn’t about being morbid, it’s about being present. Take the time to ask the questions. Download my free timeline and begin your journey of remembering. Help someone you love share their story. 

If you need help, I’m here. If you want even more help, I can create a gift certificate for someone you love. 

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