I posted yesterday about the loss of a friend of mine. In that post I mentioned how great she was and how sweet it was to see the outpouring of memories from her friends and family at the news of her passing. What amazes me is the resonance people have on those they don’t even know. After sharing the news I received several messages from my own friends and family with their condolences and, though they had never met her themselves, recollections of her just from her presence in my life from comments she made on my Facebook page. As I mentioned, we shared a lot of views and she did not hesitate to take her time to share thoughts, feelings and kindnesses on my posts. To know that some of my friends appreciated her insight and were moved to share sentiment at her passing is just another testament to who she was.
It also shows the importance of presence. Presence remains after we are gone. It is the legacy that we leave behind in the hearts and minds of everyone who knew us. You know you have been present when people who don’t even know you feel like they know you. When you’ve done that you can die knowing that your reach to the world was wide and that you truly lived and touched the lives of others. That’s the whole idea isn’t it? To make an impact? A difference? Yet so many of us forget this or just get caught up in the daily ho-hum and stop making it a priority.
I’ve said for a long time that society has their priorities screwed up. We put more focus on things that we should’t even give a second thought about and ignore the things that matter. Our intelligence, our families, our children, our diet, our faith and religion, and our presence are all suffering from neglect. We are creating an obese and fickle nation dumb with pettiness and moral turpitude hell-bent on numbing the pain of life to the point of numbing ourselves from everything. We are becoming the zombie nation that has taken over the mainstream. Pop culture is over-processed and under-achieved and whatever reality ails you, we can create a pill for that.
I feel honored to know that one of my friends had the type of heart that moved others. I am proud to know that in today’s messed up world, people like her still exist. I was blessed to have her in my life. I hope that this type of presence is something I can achieve in my life too. I think if we all refocused our priorities and realized what’s important I think we would find that we’d all be happier. We would be better husbands, better wives, better friends, better parents, better children, better teachers and better students. We would be more charitable, more accountable, more lovable, more relevant, more focused, more meaningful. We would all know the importance of our presence in this world.
So when you’re going through the motions of each day ask yourself: I am here but am I HERE? What is my presence in this world? Is it a positive one? If you want to be relevant, be PRESENT.