Memorial Day, though now filled with burnt hamburgers and long lines of traffic out of town, was originally created to be reflective; to look back at the people who sacrificed their lives for their country. It’s very honorable and yet it focuses on the past; and on loss. In peaceful times, that can make us feel grateful, because their lives were not spent in vain. In troubled times, that reflection can act as a reminder that perhaps we still have a ways to go before we find true peace on Earth.
Instead of making this time be just about a three day weekend, why not “recreate” the holiday. Make it less about death and historical wars, and more about you and your personal life.
Memorialize your Past
Think back to those people who had a profound effect on you. They can be alive or not; still in your life, or not. What matters is that you take the time to think of them, and be thankful for all that they did so that you can have the life you have now.
Example – Go through old photographs, pulling out the ones that mean the most to you; put them in a new album. Put little stories into the album as well.
Share with the Present
When you identify past influences to the present people in your life, you create an actual “memorial” and that’s the true meaning behind the day.
Example – Sit with friends or family and each take turns talking about their favorite people and say why.
Move into the Future
Think about what made those people special to you and come up with ways that you can be as impacting to others, as they have been unto you.
Example – write on a piece of paper the traits you admired most; or the actions that affected you the most. In a column next to each item, write ways that you might achieve the same thing.
Make it Happen
Live a Life worth memorializing!!