Earlier this week I attended the funeral of a lady whom I had never met. I was there to accompany my Mum, I don’t just randomly turn up at strangers funerals. I must admit I was rather perturbed by the prospect of sharing this personal experience with people who before that day, I had never met and who were obviously there to say goodbye to their loved one, who again, I had never met.
The service was beautiful, it took place at Tarn Moor Memorial Woodland where instead of headstones and graves they plant trees in remembrance of each individual. Do check out their website, the memorial woodland is an amazing alternative to the usual cememtery or churchyard burial as it is fully sustainable and environmentally friendly.
However, that is not my main reason for writing this post today.
As we stood there in the pouring rain listening to the eloquent lady relaying the details of the life of a lady who I did not know, I realised that I now knew more about this woman than many of my Facebook “friends”. This lady, Barbara, had had a rather wonderful life, she was a musician, she had earned her doctorate, she had two sons, wonderful friends and a loving family.
Okay so she hadn’t scaled Kilimanjaro or wrestled alligators but she had obviously done many things that she enjoyed, lived her life and enjoyed it.
And as I was listening to these details I began to wonder what I don’t know about my friends. The really important stuff.
We share so much s**t on social media;
“Woke up, coffee time”
“I ate a bagel, it was yummy”
“I can’t believe that my baby grew. Look how big it is” If you are that astonished by the growth of a human then I don’t think that you’re qualified to have one.
“Oh I hate Mondays, roll on Friday”
I want to know the important-not-important stuff.
Not only the answers to ‘Would You Rather Questions’ but they why’s, who you think would win in a fight between Ant-Man and StarLord! Who is hotter Scarlett Johansson or Jennifer Lawrence? (Okay so the last one doesn’t have a definitive answer, I just wanted to include them).
I want to know what stupid things your brain thinks of at 3 am or the downright horrifying things that your brain thinks of and you think “Woah, where the f**k did THAT come from?”
These are the things that make you who you are, that make you your own individual, unique person. Hating Mondays, loving Fridays, drinking coffee in the morning is mundane, every day crap. Branch out, say weird things. Confess bizarre things to your friends, if they can’t handle your weird then find different friends! Who cares what people think. Don’t be afraid to share who you really are. And not just your social media persona.
Do you really want the first time anyone knows about your true passion to be when they are standing at your funeral and listening to a potential stranger talk about the secret life you lived? No, you don’t want that, well you might but it all depends on what your secret life was…
Over the last 5 years I’ve probably attended 6 funerals (which is very depressing but I try not think about it and yes these ones were people I knew!) and at each one I learnt something new about the person and that is really sad. I’d known these people for years, spent time with them, loved them. Why didn’t I take the time to ask them about what made them tick? What they were passionate about? Why didn’t I know these things about them before they died?
If you’re doing something you’re passionate about and you love it, then let people in, show them how incredible you are. We’re so reserved and worried that people might think we’re showing off. You don’t have to be an arse about it. I’m just saying I would much rather see the picture you painted over the weekend than read about how you ate some grapes for breakfast…
Once again I started off with a precise, clear message in my head for this blog and it wandered off in to oblivion.
All I’m saying is people are so quick to talk about and share rubbish on Facebook, when in actual fact you have a trillion more interesting things you could be telling the world (well most of you do…okay some of you do. A few of you are interesting).
Today I challenge you to share something amazing, interesting or weird about yourself that you’ve never told anyone! Go on, off you go…
‘Always aim for achievement and forget about success’ – Helen Hayes