What matters most? People? Place?
I tell you I am in love with the place, but you know how I feel about the people that this land represents. My husband and my son. They are what make this home, beautiful, safe and warm and welcoming, and complete my wanting to be here. They are indeed what matters. Otherwise, would the view from my window be of no more importance than a random pretty picture hanging on my wall?
Consider the roots my son has here, strong and silent and unseen to the observing eye. Though he has lived elsewhere (twelve “homes” in his first three years, then several years settled in a place he no longer remembers), this is home, where he was raised, schooled, taught life’s lessons, and had room to grow tall and straight and sturdy. How much of this is due to the family that we three became here?
I once heard a person say everyone is replaceable.
“See how long that drop makes a ripple in the bucket of water? That’s how long our impression lasts when we’re gone,” he said. Was he really shallow enough to believe that?
I don’t see life that way. Nor would I want to. Instead, I am saturated by the many drops of water that soak into my skin and become a part of my flesh and blood.
I am affected by people. I wouldn’t want it any other way. I am fed, nourished, satisfied.
One of the greatest persons I have known was a man by the name of Bud Jackson who was herding rouge cattle in the mountains last I saw him at ninety. I have a couple of old posts about him Here and Here. In case you didn’t or don’t read those, I want to share this with you. The quote chosen for the celebration of life upon his passing was one attributed to the late, great Jackie Robinson:
“A life is not important except for the impact it has on others.”
Words to live by.
I remind myself.
You do matter. You do leave a lasting impression. Make it a good one.
I, for one, have a long ways to go. I hope I am allowed the time. Better yet, I hope I learn to make the most of the time I am allowed.
Remember how fleeting life may be.
I bow my head in blessings and respect for the family of the youngest member of our community who left a beautiful impact before ever breathing of this fresh mountain air.