If you have ever read or heard the famous poem “The Dash” by Linda Ellis, you understand the importance of a life well lived. Having the awesome responsibility of attempting to relate someone else’s “dash” in the form of a eulogy can be hard and taxing work; when it is the life of your parents or sibling, it is emotionally draining also.
I’ve had that responsibility for two of my brothers just in the past 10 weeks. Even though we laid my last brother to rest about three weeks ago, I am just now starting to put the experience into perspective. I hope to not have to do that ever again – not soon anyway.
Writing someone else’s eulogy is not only an exercise in tracking down the important details of their lives, it is also important to relate how they made those around them satisfied with their own lives. It is the lessons that others learned from them and the joyful moments they shared that their loved ones will remember. Those memories of security and happiness are what end up really being their “dash”.
The one lesson I’ve from writing 7 (maybe more) eulogies in my life is to be very cognizant of how I am living my dash. How about you?