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What Legacy Will You Leave Behind?

Are we living our lives to reflect the legacy we want to leave? I came up with a list of things I hope to be remembered for.

No matter what course our lives take, we are all inevitably destined to die.

The day of our death has been said to be the most important day of our life because this critical day is one where our entire life is measured.

That said, this article is not about death. Although thinking about our legacy may remind us of death, it is really about life and living. It is about putting our life into perspective—making conscious choices about the kind of life we want to live and the legacy we wish to leave behind.

What will your personal legacy be?

Life's Journey

As we go through our journey of life, we continuously create a personal legacy. Our legacy is the part of ourselves that will be left in the hearts and minds of others we will leave behind.

As we learn from our past, go through life in the present and foster our potential future, these experiences create our unique legacy. Our morals, values, the examples we set, the paths we choose, the decisions we make, and the way we conduct our life, create our unique signature in this world.

Most humans find the idea of “leaving a legacy behind” intriguing. It is a natural human thought to want to feel as though we have an identity and that our place on this earth truly matters.

How Do You Want to Be Remembered

Every human on this earth will leave behind a unique legacy. The question is what legacy will you leave? Do you hope to be remembered in a positive way? Most of us do. So then we must ask ourselves:

Are we living our lives to reflect the legacy we want to leave behind?

It does not matter what our current age or our state of health, since we do not know how long we will live for sure. Young, middle age or elderly, it is important to think of our legacy at all stages of our life.

Are your footprints headed in the right direction?

What Will People Think of Me If I Died Today

As I am writing this article, of course I must ask myself this same personal question. I thought long and hard about my life and my journey thus far. I happily come up with things about myself that I am very proud will be part of my legacy. Yet, on the other hand, there are things I would like to change.

Allow me to explain...

Although some people will include leaving an inheritance as part of their legacy, I am not thinking of the financial aspect here. I feel it is important to focus on personal character and uniqueness.

5 Things That Describe How I Will Be Remembered

I will use my life as an example. I decided that using the total of five things is a good place to start. I asked a couple of people close to me to help me with my list, I felt it was important for me to know how others perceive my life and the legacy I am creating.

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I hope that by sharing so much of myself here, it will prompt and assist others to take a look at their lives, and possibly change what you don't like about your legacy as it stands today.

Here is the list we came up with for me.

"How Sharon Will Be Remembered if She Died Today"

1. Sharon will be remembered for her kind and loving nature. She had a passion for working with the elderly and also fostering dogs in need, enhancing their quality of life. She was always giving to others, going out of her way to help someone in need.

I am proud to say that this will be part of my legacy.

2. Sharon was passionate about her writing. She wanted everyone close to her to read everything that she ever wrote, but that wasn't possible. Yet she kept pushing on and worked hard to make a name for herself in the "writing world." Sharon was very creative in many ways and always loved to brainstorm. She got her creativity from her wonderful mother.

I am also proud that my writing and creativity will be part of my legacy. Although, I know in my heart, there is so much more I want to accomplish with my writing. I have a lot to say!

3. Sharon was a smoker and no doubt, that shortened her life.

I really want to do something about this one. I would much rather be remembered for kicking the habit. When thinking about what legacy I will leave behind, this is one that is important to me that I change as soon as possible.

4. Sharon was a loving daughter/granddaughter, sister, aunt, partner and friend. Although she never had children of her own, she was like a “mom” to her nieces and nephews, and a caregiver to anyone who needed her, including all her four-legged "kids."

There is nothing I want to change about this one.

5. Sharon had a tendency to remain in long-term relationships that were unhealthy. This part of her, although commendable in some ways, was also detrimental to her well being. In her recent years, this meant that she lost everything including her home, etc., in an effort to help her partner. She lost herself in the relationship, and in turn, lost everything that she had gained throughout her entire life. Too bad she didn’t have a better self esteem and see that she needed to take care of herself first and foremost.

Well, this is a huge one, and something that I am continuously working on changing in the time that I have left on this earth.

My Favorite Quotes About Leaving a Legacy

Carve your name on hearts, not tombstones. A legacy is etched into the minds of others and the stories they share about you. ~ Shannon L. Alder

A writer doesn't dream of riches and fame, though those things are nice. A true writer longs to leave behind a piece of themselves, something that withstands the test of time and is passed down for generations. ~ C.K. Webb

No legacy is so rich as honesty. ~ William Shakespeare

While it is well enough to leave footprints on the sands of time, it is even more important to make sure they point in a commendable direction. ~ James Cabell

We all die. The goal isn't to live forever, the goal is to create something that will. ~ Chuck Palahniuk

What 5 Things Describe How You Will Be Remembered

Take some time to think about what people will remember about you if you were gone today. Simply list five things. Here are some statements that may help you to begin creating your list:

  • What do my family members think of me and what will they remember most about me?
  • Have I learned from past mistakes and changed my life accordingly?
  • Do I need to make amends to anyone?
  • Have I made a positive impact on my children and grandchildren?
  • What is unique about me that will be remembered in a positive light?
  • Do I want to be remembered for a life that was lived to its fullest extent or one that simply happened?
  • What are my morals, values, and beliefs? Would I want others to follow in my footsteps?
  • Was I a good friend? How will my friends remember me?
  • Did I live a respectable life that others would use as an example to follow?
  • Is it time to revise certain parts of my life to create the legacy I hope to leave?

It's Important to Think About Our Legacy At All Stages of Our Life

Our legacy is a “side-effect” of every single thing we do in our life. Don’t let life pass you by without considering the legacy you will leave behind.

Every human life is a work of art, a unique self portrait. After we take our final curtsy, our story will live on. Will you leave behind a meaningful legacy?

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.


Bren on June 05, 2019:

My legacy i would like to ask is please dont let science discoverys make us forget that special thing privacy n please dont bring home things from planets n risk our lives here by wanting to know maybe a little to much can we also have a say its our home to

gerrielynn on August 02, 2017:

Wow! SO much to think about. Great article, thought provoking for sure, and as you shared both your weaknesses as well as your strengths in this article, it helps in considering not just what is good about me that might be what I leave as a legacy, but also what's bad that I certainly do not want to leave as a legacy. Thank you for sharing your soul and your writing gift to help others/us! That in itself is a wonderful legacy to leave the world.

Rev. Theophilus Anyimson on June 24, 2017:

Sharyn, God bless you for being so thoughtful. You have xrayed the Bible verses in Pro. 22:1 and Ecc. 7:1, "A good name is more desirable than great riches...." "A good name is better than fine perfume...."(NIV). I think the best and greatest legacy we can leave behind is a"GOOD NAME" which comes through a transformed life by Jesus Christ. Our character or lifestyle speaks volume than accumulated wealth. Remain blessed and keep writing.

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on August 13, 2014:

Hi Diana ~ I agree! Thank you so much for your comment.

Dianna Mendez on August 12, 2014:

Need to think about this important part of our life. A legacy is what helps others live a better life in turn. Great wisdom in this post.

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on April 27, 2013:

Hello F.A. ~ What wonderful feedback. I do think it's important to think about and discuss how we plan to enhance our little corner of the world. The care and welfare of animals is a wonderful legacy. I really appreciate your feedback, thank you!


FlourishAnyway from USA on April 24, 2013:

I've already talked to my teenager about the legacy I intend to leave because it is a continuation of what she knows in our everyday lives. We speak regularly of making your little corner of the world a brighter, better place and of your unique purpose for being here. She knows specifically how I like to do that -- support of spay and neuter. Thanks for the reminder on the important stuff.

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 02, 2013:

Hello Neinahpets ~ I am so glad you came across this article and it gave you something to think about. I believe the legacy we leave behind is important and should be thought about early in life so that we can make changes if desired also. I appreciate you stopping by.


Stephanie from Canada on January 28, 2013:

I've never thought of my own legacy and what I'll leave behind when I'm gone. This has given me something to think about. Thanks for sharing!!

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on January 26, 2013:

Hi Diana ~ YAY!!!!!! for you kicking the habit. I think about it but it's so difficult. I need to make that "smart decision" too. Of course, you already know I understand the self esteem thing too. I'm working on it all though. I don't want my legacy to include these negative things. Thank you so much for your great feedback. Take care,


Diana L Pierce from Potter County, Pa. on January 26, 2013:

Wow! So much of your list reflects on much of my own legacy. As of Sept. 18, 2012 I kicked the smoking habit. It is the smartest decision I ever made. I know if I can quit, anyone can. My low self esteem still flares up from time to time and I still let my spouse control how I feel about myself more often than not, but it's getting better. Good hub. Voted up.

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on January 08, 2013:

Hi Dee ~ Happy New Year! You are most welcome. I'm so glad you enjoyed the Dash poem as well. Take care,


Dee aka Nonna on January 08, 2013:

Love this....thank you for a most excellent hub. And, thank you for the Dash poem....had not read or heard of this. Will become a new favorite.

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on January 07, 2013:

Hi Natasha ~ I guess the subject was something that you needed to hear. That's a good thing. Thanks for mentioning "The Dash Poem." I have read it before and it is really awesome. In fact I like it so much, I am going to post it here to share with readers. Thanks so much Natasha!

THE DASH written and copyrighted (1996) by Linda Ellis

I read of a man who stood to speak

at the funeral of a friend.

He referred to the dates on her tombstone,

from the beginning…to the end.

He noted that first came the date of her birth

and spoke of the following date with tears,

but he said what mattered most of all

was the dash between those years.

For that dash represents all the time

that she spent alive on earth.

And now only those who loved her

know what that little line is worth.

For it matters not, how much we own,

the cars…the house…the cash.

What matters is how we live and love

and how we spend our dash.

So, think about this long and hard.

Are there things you’d like to change?

For you never know how much time is left

that can still be rearranged.

If we could just slow down enough

to consider what’s true and real

and always try to understand

the way other people feel.

And be less quick to anger

and show appreciation more

and love the people in our lives

like we’ve never loved before.

If we treat each other with respect

and more often wear a smile,

remembering that this special dash

might only last a little while.

So, when your eulogy is being read,

with your life’s actions to rehash…

would you be proud of the things they say

about how you spent YOUR dash?

Natasha from Hawaii on January 07, 2013:

This must be the theme of the day - this is basically what one of my professors was talking about in class tonight! We actually watched some video clip of some poem called "The Dash Poem" (I think) about 'the dash' between one's birth and death.

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on September 12, 2012:

Hello Steve West ~ great to meet you. Every so often, I do share personal things because it is my hope to help others. Thank you for that compliment. As far as smoking, it's a difficult habit to break for me. I actually do have an electronic cigarette but I do not like it. But I have been told by some friends that I need to try another brand. I look forward to checking out your hub on them. I appreciate you stopping by. Thank you,


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on September 12, 2012:

Hello faith_love_hope32 ~ wow, I love your comments and all the thought you put into them. As far as self esteem, I think for me it's a lifelong process. Something I always need to work on. I do think, though, that I've gotten to a place where I am much more in tune for not settling for less. It's great to hear how much you've worked on yourself to let go of resentments. That's so important and you are setting a great example for your kids. You have quite a span in ages of your children and now you have twins, which is so cool. They are lucky to have a mom who is so conscious of their well being along with her own well being too. I'm thrilled that this hub meant so much to you. You are a perfect example of why I tend to "put it all out there" to help others in my own little way. Thank you so so much for your feedback. Best wishes to you,


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on September 12, 2012:

Hello Iamsam ~ thank you for your extremely insightful comments. I am thrilled when others tell me that this article was very thought provoking for them. I really appreciate your feedback. And no, I have not kicked the smoking habit although I have cut down. It is a tough one to break. Thank you so much for stopping by.


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on September 11, 2012:

Hi Peggy ~ Thank you for such nice comments. I believe that many people do not think about the legacy they will leave behind. I hope that this will prompt others to do so. I appreciate your feedback, votes and sharing this important message too.


Steve West from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina on September 11, 2012:

I enjoyed reading your hub. It takes a lot of guts to reveal personal thoughts in a public forum, hats off to you. I quit smoking a while back using an electronic cigarette to get me past the tough parts of quitting, and do you know what? It wasn't that tough. Bahhh it's tough "they" say, who the heck are they? You sound like a person who deserves to feal good. Don't listen to what "they" say. Just quit. I am in the process of writing a how -to hub on quitting cigarettes with the electronic cigarette and method I used. I will let you know when I post it. Thanks again for the nice read.

faith_love_hope32 on September 11, 2012:

I really love this because I have actually been thinking about this recently myself. I can relate to the last part with relationships and self esteem but I can tell you that you can build your self esteem to where you'd like it to be because I did it and I never would have dreamed it could be rebuilt but it was.

With a lot of hard inner work, I have self esteem again and do NOT ever settle for less with anything in life. I am dreaming big and am very focused. I also always put everyone before myself which is a must as a mother but I'm starting to find a little balance to squeeze myself in there too.

What I wouldn't like to be remembered by is my bitterness, resentments and jadedness from my past and things that I've been through growing up, which I have worked long and hard on getting over the past 7 years, more intensely the past 2 years. I feel like I'm finally moving on and learning to walk away from those things.

What I'd like to be remembered by is the kind of mother and woman I am. I'm a fighter and survivor and my job is to make sure my children grow up to be the kind of men and women they were meant to be. They have a life purpose and I'm going to make sure they achieve that purpose and their dreams. We don't know how long we have on this earth as you said with dying young but my hope is to watch my children grow up, god willing.

My oldest will be 18 in February but my youngest are 2 year old twins. I am witnessing the fruits of my labor with my older children and it is beyond rewarding. I want to be remembered as a mother that always saw the glass half full and had faith during the hard times and as a Mother that would do anything for her children and who did an awesome job raising them alone.

Because they will all have something great to contribute to this world. There is more to work on with my legacy though, things that need fixing. Great hub, I really needed to read this today. :)

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on September 11, 2012:

Hi FaithDream ~ I'm so glad you appreciated this article. I really do hope that it makes a difference for everyone that stops by to read it. Thank you so much for your feedback!


Helna on September 11, 2012:

A very thought provoking hub. Really it made me think of my life and death. What I want to leave behind. As a believer of Jesus Christ and Bible, I am sure there are rewards awaiting for us for the things we do on this earth. Jesus said that do not store up wealth on this earth. Also told us to make friends with your wealth. We have to leave our wealth and health in this world. A new world is awaiting us. Some will raise for the eternal condemnation and others for eternal glory.

We have to live a life that glorify God and reach that eternal glory. Also help others to reach their. I think that is the best legacy we can leave behind. We will see many grateful faces there if we introduce them to Christ in this world.

Thanks for the hub. Thanks for reminding me of my duty.

I find this hub was written many months back and hope that by now you have overcome with your smoking issue.

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on September 10, 2012:

Hello Deepak ~ You are welcome. I hope that most people think the way that you do. I appreciate your feedback, thank you so much!


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on September 10, 2012:

Hi Dee ~ I understand, this is something that I think about more and more as I get older too. I'm glad this made you "think." Thanks for your great feedback.


Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on September 10, 2012:

One's legacy is such an important topic to think about. You did it justice with this hub of yours. Up votes and will share. Others may just wish to start thinking about this if it has not already occurred to them.

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on September 10, 2012:

Hi Kris ~ I agree. When we think about what really matters, we definitely can work at "not sweating the small stuff." So glad this was a timely reminder for you. I will check out the hub by sidkemp. Thank you so much for your feedback!


FaithDream from (Midwest) USA on September 10, 2012:

What a beautifully inspiring hub.. And one of the best subjects to discuss. You wrote it well and you're making a difference to everyone who reads it. Well done!

Deepak Chaturvedi from New Delhi, India on September 10, 2012:

It is important to think about the lagacy as it gives a true meaning of your stay on earth also proves the worthyness of your deeds.Thanks to make us think and sharing.

Dee aka Nonna on September 10, 2012:

What a wonderful hub and such a wonderful way to make us all think. It actually is something I think about more and more as I grow older. Really important subject.

KrisL from S. Florida on September 10, 2012:

Thanks so much Sharyn. Voted beautiful. I think that this perspective also helps us not "sweat the small stuff," which was a good reminder for me right now.

You might also enjoy this, by a fellow apprentice:

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on September 10, 2012:

Hey Cyndi ~ Good, cuz that was my intent :) - to get people thinking about what legacy they will leave behind. Thank you so much for your feedback.


Cynthia Calhoun from Western NC on September 10, 2012:

Wow. Really good stuff here. And sobering. Now you've really got me thinking about my own legacy. I wonder...

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on April 30, 2012:

Hi Diana ~ it is wonderful to see you on HubPages. Thanks for your feedback here and also on Facebook. I appreciate you, but you already know that! Love you too,


Diana Owens from My Little Hole In The Wall, HubPages, USA on April 29, 2012:

WONDERFUL!!!! usual. :) I expect nothing less from you, dear lady. Voted UP, UP and away! ;) love ya

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on April 18, 2012:

Hi Pamela ~ I truly believe that you are doing such a wonderful favor for your family. Researching your ancestry is a beautiful gift, especially putting it into book form. There is information I have searched for about my family and have hit a dead end. I wish more was written down in the past. I am so glad you stopped by. Thank you for your feedback, votes, follow and fan mail too.


Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on April 16, 2012:

This is a very well thought out hub and it certainly leaves all of us with some things to consider. One of the things I have been doing for quite a long time is researching our family's ancestry, and this is a gift for future generations as I hope to publish a book when I'm ready. I enjoyed this hub immensely and glad I found you on Hubpages. Voted up, useful and interesting.

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on April 02, 2012:

Hi Paula ~ What absolutely beautiful thoughts of what those will remember you for. From what I know of you, I believe your true self and sincere intentions continue to show to all those who come in contact with you. I am thrilled you (and others) feel this hub is cause for seriously deep thought. Thank you for stopping by and for your awesome comments. Sending hugs your way,


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on April 02, 2012:

Ciao Chris ~ It's great to meet you. I do hope this article sparks reminders for people to really take a look at their life and what they will be remembered for. It is never to early to think about what legacy we will leave behind. Thank you so much for your comments and votes.


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on April 02, 2012:

Hi Michael (Cloud Explorer) ~ Thank you so much for your awesome comments. I love that you used the word "genuine" to describe my article. It truly is. I hope is gives many people something to think about now and the opportunity to make changes if they so desire. I really appreciate your feedback.


Suzie from Carson City on April 02, 2012:

Sharyn....absolutely beautiful.....and I might add, cause for some seriously deep thought. I know what I surely would love my legacy to be. I'm fairly confident that my true self and sincere intentions came through to those who mean the very most to me.

As for my most treasured role in life, I would want my children to be positive beyond all else that I LOVED them with my entire being every moment of my life...and will for eternity.

christollesseb from UK ME ASIA on April 02, 2012:

Hello and thanks for this awesome thought provoking Hub. It has certainly sparked off a huge response. It affects each one of us and is a timely reminder that we all come and go the same way, but what we do here is for a purpose. Many of us will be pondering ways to improve our parting!

Voted in all categories and up! Ciao, Christo.

Mike Pugh from New York City on April 02, 2012:

Awesomely intense hub, I'm digging your writing style for sure @Sharon, I actually located this hub from facebook on that awesome "Professional BS Writers" group I recently joined.

I've left you a brief message there as well as to what it is I would leave behind as my legacy in life, I think your courage here shows that you've achieved a great deal in life as a whole, and like you stated here in your hub it has nothing to do with money, what a person may decide to leave behind to their loved one's.

My legacy has already been drawn out, and eventually God willing the world will also respond if God blesses me & my family to gain benefit from such achievements, I've personally had the privilege to accomplish.

Yours my dear is a highly commendable goal, and your hub makes that point clear as day, thanks for sharing such a genuine article, and this one is being shared on all of my networks as well, as the other one I read of yours.

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on March 15, 2012:

Hi Cyndi ~ I see I got ya thinking :) I agree that everyone needs to think about this now. The earlier the better so that you can make changes if desired. Thank you for your great feedback and for sharing this article too.


Cynthia Calhoun from Western NC on March 14, 2012:

Aw, I think everyone needs to think about this. I also think it's a really good exercise to actually write your own obituary. What will you write? What will you do? Great food for thought. Nice job. :)

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 28, 2012:

Hey Audra ~ So glad you stopped by. I'm happy that I gave you a lot to think about. Thanks so much for the compliment :)


iamaudraleigh on February 28, 2012:

Hi Sharyn,

Wow, you gave me a lot to think about here! You wrote an excellent hub...voted up!!!

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 21, 2012:

Hi Susie ~ I love that, "we are what we leave behind." I agree, simple and so true. Thank you for stopping by. I truly enjoyed your piece as well.


Sweetsusieg from Michigan on February 21, 2012:

This is a wonderful hub!! My personal saying is "All we are is what we leave behind". I hope to be remembered with fondness from those that I have come in contact with. Life is too short but it also is what we make it (someone else said that!!)

Thanks for directing me to this Hub, it was a fantastic read!!

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 15, 2012:

Hi Teylina ~ I am so glad that you stopped by again. Thank you for your wonderful feedback. I am honored by your appreciation of this work.


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 15, 2012:

Hi Dexter ~ I am thrilled to hear that this piece brought out critical thinking and assessment within yourself. It sounds complicated but it really is not. My intent is to prompt others to think about their life and make changes now if necessary so when it is time to leave a legacy, it will be one that you are proud of. Thank you so much for your comments.


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 14, 2012:

Hi Julianna ~ Thank you so much for your great feedback. I'm happy that this has prompted you to write some things down. It is never too late to think about these things and what is important to us to leave as our legacy. I had mentioned this in an earlier comment, but I hope to also publish a hub on "how to write a personal legacy letter." Thanks for stopping by to read and comment!


Teylina on February 14, 2012:

AEvans so right, as usual. Never too late to think about this subject, and Dexter, like you, I, too, enjoy the hubs that take me into a world others see that I do not. Scary, scary place that is. Sharyn, have to tell you again I really appreciated this writing. Very well done.

Dexter Yarbrough from United States on February 14, 2012:

Hi Sharyn! I love hubs that allow me to indulge in critical thinking and assessment. Your hub does just that - and I thank you.

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 13, 2012:

Hi Yvonne ~ I believe it is very similar to what you are thinking...looking at our present day actions and how they will affect others. Thinking about this gives us the opportunity to see if there is something we'd like to change. Everything we do has the potential to be remembered as our legacy. Thank you so much for your feedback.


Julianna from SomeWhere Out There on February 13, 2012:

No wonder we get along, we have so much in common. Beginning today, I am going to write down in my journal what I would like to be remembered for. I agree it is never to late to begin your own legacy. Thumbs up!

Yvonne Spence from UK on February 13, 2012:

Hmm, an interesting way of looking at life - or death! I don't often think about this in quite this way, but I do often think about the effect my actions have on my kids or others now. I think your pointers are good for anyone to stop and take stock and see where you want to go. (Who is it that talks about “taking fearless inventory”? I can’t remember right now, but it is good advice.) Thanks for a thought-provoking hub.

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 13, 2012:

Hey Dear B ~ I thank you for your wonderful comments. You have written great things to be remembered for. And I also want my hubs to live on especially because I share "who I am" in many of them. I have wondered what really happens to our hubs once we are no longer here. It appears that they stay for awhile and are then removed. But I personally think this is something the staff needs to address since more recently, a couple of our hubbers have passed away. Thank you so much for your feedback, I hope all is going well for you!


b. Malin on February 12, 2012:

Interesting Thoughts in this Hub Sharyn. Lots of Great Comments. These are Poignant thoughts of my own...I'd like to be Remembered as Being a Good Person, a Good Friend, A Good Lover, with a Fun sense of Humor, Fair minded. Loved Dark Comedy like Woody Allen's. I hope I was Loved by my Family and that I made a Lasting impression to be remember Long after I'm gone! And that my Hubs will go on until Infinity...

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 12, 2012:

Hi KimberlyLake ~ thank you so much for your feedback. Several comments have mentioned that this is "food for thought." That makes me feel great. I appreciate your comments and share too. Thanks,


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 12, 2012:

urmilashukla23 ~ it's great to meet you. It's okay to get emotional, these are important and sometimes difficult things to think about. I wish you the best. Thank you for your open feedback.


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 12, 2012:

Hello Keri ~ I am so glad you found this and am honored that it has made an impact on you. I hope you sleep well thinking about your legacy :) Thanks for stopping by!


Kimberly Lake from California on February 12, 2012:

This hub is definitely food.for thought. Awesome. Socially sharef.

Urmila from Rancho Cucamonga,CA, USA on February 12, 2012:

Very powerful and inspirational! This made me to think about my life. I am getting so emotional here, while making my lists.

Congratulation, this hub is included in Millionaire`s weekly favorites list.

Voted up!

Keri Summers from West of England on February 12, 2012:

This is a very touching Hub, Sharyn. I found it through Millionaire Tip's weekly compilation. I've a feeling I'm going to be thinking about this as I fall asleep tonight!

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 12, 2012:

Hey Shasta ~ thank you so much for including me in your weekly favorites hub. I am honored. And thank you for your additional feedback as well. We have searched birth records and that sort of thing as well. I extensively searched police officers killed in the line of duty too. We do not know what last name he used. But it gets confusing if he did in fact have my grandfather's last name since it was changed way back then. It was shortened at some point and the new shortened version is a very common name. I am sure I will search again and hope to find something that I missed. Thank you so much for stopping by again.


Shasta Matova from USA on February 12, 2012:

Sharon, I am back to let you know that I have included this hub in my weekly favorites list.

I am glad I came back because I missed your reply. Most states will let you search for birth records, so you may be able to find your uncle's birth certificate if his father's name is mentioned on it. You can also search for court records in case she tried to get child support from him. I do hope you find your uncle.

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 11, 2012:

Hi Justin ~ Your comment reminds me of both my mother and grandmother. Both woman left wonderful legacies when it comes to character and family values. I want to be remembered for living up to their legacy as well. Thank you so much for stopping by.


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 11, 2012:

Dear Gail ~ thank you so much for mentioning the important self-reflection in this piece. I do hope that it inspires others to do the same. You are correct, when we think about what legacy we will leave behind, no matter what our age, it helps keep us focused on the things that truly matter. I appreciate you my friend and am also glad that I have met you through HubPages. I love and highly respect your work.


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 11, 2012:

Hi Teylina ~ great to see you. Thanks you for your great feedback. Footprints in the right direction is a good thing :) I'm so glad you enjoyed this!


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 11, 2012:

elikat02 ~ commenting that this article speaks volumes means so much to me and I thank you. It's great to meet you. Thank you for your feedback and vote.


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 11, 2012:

Hello Kelleyward ~ I really appreciate your feedback. I like your term "true north." I do feel it is beneficial to think about our legacy at all times during our life. It helps to keep us on the right track. Thank you so much for stopping by.


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 11, 2012:

Swetankraj ~ is it great to meet you. Thanks for taking the time to read and comment. Have a great weekend!


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 11, 2012:

Hi Susan ~ teachers have a special place in many hearts. I believe teachers truly build their legacy on an hourly basis and I commend you for that. I have a sister and a niece that are both teachers. I am so proud of them and the changes they have been able to make to help others lives as well. Thank you so much for your feedback, votes and share too! I appreciate you!


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 11, 2012:

Hey Sis ~ thank you so much for your comments. I love the idea of being remembered for your sense of humor and zest for life. I am sure there are people that are remembered for being "crabby" all the time. What fun is that :) Thank you so much for stopping by!


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 11, 2012:

Hello MM ~ great to see you. I would think there are many people who have not actually thought about this. It has been prevalent on my mind more recently only due to a milestone birthday coming up. It kind of changes things :) I'm so glad you liked this and the video too. Take care,


Justin W Price from Juneau, Alaska on February 11, 2012:

sharon, I think about this a lot, especially considering I have so much to live up to against those in my family who have already passed and will pass. It's something to think about.

Gail Sobotkin from South Carolina on February 11, 2012:

Oh Sharyn, this hub was so thought-provoking and the level of honesty and self-reflection that you showed in your personal example was inspiring.

I do think about what I want my legacy to be because it helps put things in perspective and keeps me focused on the things that truly matter.

I thoroughly enjoyed this hub and voted it up, useful, awesome, beautiful and interesting.

You're a terrific writer, a kind, compassionate supportive friend and I'm glad I've met you through Hub Pages.

Teylina on February 11, 2012:

Excellent hub. Makes you think. At least my footprints are headed the right way. Have a photo of my on on soft white sand; never thought of them in the way you put it! Really enjoyed and did make me think.

elikat02 from North Carolina on February 11, 2012:

Your article speaks volumes. Very thoughtful insight and inspirational. I voted up! :)

kelleyward on February 11, 2012:

Great hub. I think about this often. After reading your hub I'm reminded that I need to focus on following my "True North" in order to have the quality of life I want for myself and my family. Thanks for the reminder. Life is so short. It is very important to leave a positive legacy.

Swetank Raj from India on February 11, 2012:

Very thoughtful and amazing hub really i liked it too much! Voted up.

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 10, 2012:

My dear friend Maria ~ I just love you. Your kind words mean so much to me. Yes, of course you can share whatever you'd like. I would love to sit in on your classes :) I am planning a hub about how to write a "legacy letter" and why. Sounds like you may like to use that as well. And there definitely is much more ink in my pen, no doubt yours as well. Thanks for your feedback and always boosting my confidence. Have a great weekend! Love,


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 10, 2012:

Hello Thomas ~ your comment is awesome! You know I love your silliness yet I am also honored that I made you pause :) I realize that is a really good thing and makes me cherish your feedback even more. Thank you,


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 10, 2012:

Hi Brenda ~ thank you, that was my give others "food for thought" :) I appreciate your feedback. I hope all is well with you!


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 10, 2012:

Hi Tina ~ OMG, you got that right about life being a long learning process. It doesn't stop. I personally feel that I have learned so much just recently in my life. I think at my age, it is beginning to be called wisdom? And I agree, being remembered for "trying" would/should count. Thank you for your feedback, I very much appreciate you stopping by.


Susan Holland from Southwest Missouri on February 10, 2012:

Sharyn, this is food for thought. As a mother,wife, teacher, friend, etc., I do wonder what others will remember about me. I hope compassion and humor are at the top of their list.

You have written a thought-provoking, wonderful hub! Votes and shared!

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 10, 2012:

Dear Dr. BJ ~ I know, I know, but Doc, it is a difficult habit to kick. Yes, I know, it is VERY important. And I will tell Kelly to stop watching for the bus and start looking out for the planes. I always look forward to your feedback :) Thank you always for your fun and enlightening comments!


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 10, 2012:

Hello Alcosin ~ I appreciate your comments. I have a feeling that although you would like people to forget you, that probably won't be the case. But if what they remember is you enjoying life and living it to its fullest, that will be a wonderful personal legacy. Thank you for your feedback and votes too!


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 10, 2012:

Hi Susan ~ thank you for your feedback. I understand, this has been something on my mind for the last year also :) I feel it's important to think about at all stages of our lives giving us the opportunity to make changes now while we can. I really appreciate your comments and votes too.


Angela Blair from Central Texas on February 10, 2012:

Sharyn -- very insightful and soul-searching Hub. Nearing 75 one really begins to ponder these things. It's good to know others start earlier. It's my fondest hope that I'll be remembered for a zest for life and an off-the-wall sense of humor (and not my occasional temper fits). Wonderful Hub and voted UP! Best, Sis

Movie Master from United Kingdom on February 10, 2012:

Hello Sharyn, I must admit this is something I have never thought about and I don't know why, - so now I have a lot of thinking to do!

An excellent hub and choice of video, thank you Sharyn for your honest writing and being you.

Best wishes and voting up, Lesley

Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 10, 2012:

Dear Pooh ~ thank you for your beautiful words of encouragement. I am glad you mentioned the video song. It took me SO long to find something that I felt was appropriate for what I was trying to share here. The song "Family Tree" really does and it is a beautiful song. I felt the words were so relevant. It mentions "are you gonna be like your father was, his father was" and that really hit me. My father is an alcoholic and so was his father. I am so proud to say that neither myself or my sisters followed this destructive pattern. So we've broke that chain. I believe it is true that no matter what your family legacy is, you have the power to change it, hopefully for the positive.

You mentioned, Pooh, about how "we do need to look after our own sense of peace and well being in order to be the kind of friend, parent, spouse and neighbor that makes a positive impact." I believe this is so accurate. I've messed up in this "department" a little and working on changing it. I am always there for other people, very much a caregiver, but at times I have neglected myself in the process. I am trying to find a better balance.

All of that said (wow, I'm wordy this morning), thank you for your feedback and for sharing this work with others who you feel will be encouraged. That means a lot to me.


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 10, 2012:

Hello MT ~ You brought up family history research and I personally believe that is so important. Documenting your family history can be extremely important to those you leave behind. My mother left this earth way too early and I continue to wish that I had answers to some lingering questions.

My mother lived her life as an only child yet there had been talk that she actually had a stepbrother. She confirmed this fact and yet didn't want to speak further about it. So my sisters and I only knew that we had an uncle who was a police officer that died in the line of duty. He was married and had several children. We knew his first name but not his last which was confusing because we have no idea who his mother is. Later, when we tried to get answers about this from my Grandmother, she was reluctant to speak about it we believe because he was a product of an affair my Grandfather had. We have extensively researched to find our "lost family" to no avail. I wish we would have probed these questions earlier in life. It makes me sad to know that I have cousins and other family out there that I probably will never meet.

So, sorry for that long response but it really struck a cord :) Regarding your loving quilts, they absolutely are part of your legacy. To this day, I am comforted when I use one of the afghans that either my Mom or Gram crocheted for me. Thank you so much for your comments MT, have a great day.


Maria Jordan from Jeffersonville PA on February 10, 2012:

Dear Sharon,

This may be your best writing yet to me. You have shared deeply of yourself and given us all fabulous guidelines for developing our own legacy.

I speak with my students about their legacy (what will their family and friends say about them at their funeral) in Holistic class and it can be off putting. It's right up there with 'writing your own eulogy'! May I use your guideline questions with my students, giving you credit? I think they would be so helpful to them as well.

Your heart truly guides your writing and I agree that you have much more ink in your pen. Voted UP & UABI.

Have a beautiful weekend. Love, Maria

ThoughtSandwiches from Reno, Nevada on February 09, 2012:


When I opened this hub I expected my answer to be, I left a crippling debt and several statements to the effect of, "Damn...he owed me $50."

This is much weightier and something that gives me pause in order to properly load the scales.

Powerful writing.


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 09, 2012:

Rob ~ I appreciate you stopping by to read and comment. Thank you so much.


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 09, 2012:

My Dear Kelly ~ you make me laugh. Please don't think about that bus:) No doubt, there are other things to worry about! Seriously, thank you for your friendship and support. You know I appreciate you!


Sharon Smith (author) from Northeast Ohio USA on February 09, 2012:

Dear Vincent ~ thank you for your heartfelt feedback. I especially loved your comment about striving for excellence in character and morality. I agree and believe that is so important. That is what I focused on here and not all the "material" things. And your character and morals are what your children will remember and carry with them. Great comment, thank you so much,


Brenda Barnes from America-Broken But Still Beautiful on February 09, 2012:

Sharyn, this is so beautiful that my heart is soft and warm. You certainly have given me much to think about and to work on in my own life. Thank you so much.

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