For this week’s writing challenge, we want you to talk about leaving your mark. If you need a few more ideas to get you going, try these suggestions:
Taking a look around you, what three objects most represent you and why? How do they reflect your personality, and who you are?
Initially, I almost skipped this week’s writing challenge. How do I talk about leaving a mark without being boastful on one hand or self-deprecating on the other? How do I know if I’m leaving a mark or wandering aimlessly? I suppose I can relate that I am well-respected at work and have many people believing I know everything. Is that leaving a mark? I can relate that I’ve heard comments about my cheerful and humorous nature. Is that leaving a mark? I can also relate that I consider myself a gift to the land of dorks, although my friend Natasha believes that’s a negative and not a mark. Okay, then, I’ll say that I have left my mark as a geek who passes on her love of Dr. Who to those who will listen without scrunching up their face in a bout of “I-hate-sci-fi” pain.
The best way that I can give readers a picture of how I leave a mark in this world is with three objects, three words representing the person that is me.
There is so much to reflect upon with a plate of Christmas cookies. I love sugar. I love sweets. I love cookies. I love everything about Christmas. I have a chocolate addition of the serious kind. There is not one friend or family member that does not know this about me. Even better: They are delightfully happy about the mark I leave on their tongue and in their stomachs. It is a mark that is expected, desired and truly appreciated. You see, I bake Christmas cookies for those I love instead of driving myself crazy at the mall, trying to pick out the perfect holiday gift. It’s a tradition that involves vacation days and countless hours spent in the kitchen during the month of December. My mother asks for pecan sandies, Natasha asks for date bars, her daughter loves the lemon curd cookies and Kelly chomps down the oatmeal-peanut butter-chocolate chip cookies. Friend Kathy is not picky, she loves anything I bake for her. It’s all good. It’s a mark that I will refuse to let go of until I can no longer find the strength to use a wooden spoon or ship a package to my brother and his girlfriend.
I want these flip-flops. It’s the smiley face – although the M is a bonus – and the voice of a humorous mark I leave with others.
I love to laugh and I love to make others laugh. Girlfriend Natasha appreciates my dry, weird and warped sense of humor. Others may look at me as if I’ve jumped on the Looney Tune Train. I’ll take both. Life is too short to be serious and stoic all of the time. If I can smile and make a newcomer at church smile, if I can tell a joke and make my co-worker laugh, or if my fellow bloggers follow me because I hit their funny bone, I’ve left a mark. It’s a mark that I am genuinely honored to leave, especially with Natasha, who would be sorely disappointed if I ever stopped writing silly, strange comments on my cat-a-day calendar.
Speaking of cats…
I am the crazy cat lady. One cannot come into my abode without seeing cat toys strewn about or four pleading eyes asking for more food. One cannot leave my abode without taking a few cat hairs along. The third mark of my existence is the furry children who currently live with me, and those that have gone before them. I have been a crazy cat mom for many moons. I have a million cat stories, all of which I choose to share. Friends ask how the kids are doing. Co-workers ask if I need another one (because they know someone who has a litter). I’ve dressed up like the crazy cat lady for Halloween. I have a cat toy buying habit. My kids eat only the best cat food. My vet knows that I take care of the small beings and my babies have several “aunts” who are more than willing to take care of them when I’m gone. This mark has been around so long that I can’t imagine it being any other way. My kids, Gibbs and Ziva, give me unconditional love and that make me happy (see #2). So happy that it makes me want to bake cookies (see #1).
So, in summary, I have made a mark in this life with cookies, laughter and felines. It’s not all of who I am, it’s a sampling. I don’t believe that we, as humans, truly ever know how we affect others, or how we make a mark with everyone we meet. There are times when in helping others or volunteering, we leave a lasting memory of kindness in the recipient’s mind without ever knowing. Leaving a mark in the world can be the memory of a grandchild who has heard stories that his grandfather was a hero, it can come with a random act of kindness, or it can come with the mouth-watering bite of a Christmas cookie.
If you’d like to read more about how humans around the world are making their mark, go to the Weekly Writing Challenge and check out the other blog posts.