Friday, January 15, 2010

A Remarkable Life

I'm not sure what it is that makes a life remarkable. Remarkable as in unusual, extraordinary, worthy of notice.

A few years ago I attended the funeral of a good friend's mother. I heard her loving family and good friends describe her ordinary life. There was no drama evident in the telling, but rather the picture of someone supremely happy doing the everyday tasks that get us all through life. I felt envious that my friend's mother did not feel the need to strive for, or live a life beyond the one she had.

I found her ordinary life quite remarkable.

It is also the instances when life departs from the ordinary that are noteworthy.

So the life of someone from another culture is always remarkable, because it is different.

What is even more remarkable is what happens when the broad brushes used to paint a picture of what constitutes an average life are laid down, and a finer brush is taken up to fill in the details.

When we really listen carefully to the details of another's story, layers fall away exposing diverse qualities.

Before Christmas I listened to and then wrote the story of a remarkable life. I am both proud and humbled to contribute a profile article to the inaugral Diversity Writers website which is the excellent and very new website of one of Writers Rising's contributors-Sharon Egan. It has been published here.

My article describes the life of a wonderful lady who I call Viv. Viv's story reveals her passion to be herself no matter the cost.

Perhaps that is what constitutes a remarkable life; simply having enough courage to be YOU.