It was my birthday two weeks ago and though the gray hair strands and facial wrinkles are yet to make an appearance, it’s obvious that I am aging albeit gracefully. In the past, my birthdays were fun days, marked with a feast of cakes, drinks, food and a nice timeout with good company which is great, but the older and wiser I become, the deeper the meaning and sense of responsibility infused with the urgency that accompanies this day. So this year, I chose to have some quiet moments by myself, to reflect on my journey so far and develop a credible plan for the fast approaching years. However, as I meditated, one prominent question that lingered in my heart was “how will you be remembered?”Now, the debate within me wasn’t “if” but “how”.
One certain feature of our existence is that we will all be remembered regardless of how we choose to live. In fact, the major differentiations of our remembrance will be “the how” depending on the quality of our lives and “the extent” depending on the depth and width of our influence. Basically, we will all be remembered in certain ways by certain people that we’ve once come in contact with. Therefore, it is important that we realize the enormity of our seemingly insignificant actions on the testimony that trails our lives, and begin to live consciously.
We all are like perfume bottles with signature scents that go off during every contact and interaction we have with people and places, and our scent continues to linger long after we’re gone. Since we cannot control the involuntary action of spreading our scent, we must deliberately develop a fragrance that corresponds with the testimonial we want. Therefore, we must first take a whiff of ourselves, assess our current scent and rid ourselves of every wrong ingredient in our mix.
Many are products of divergent complexities from abusive pasts to hurts, negative complexes, addictions, wrong socialization processes among others. These complexities left unattended to have over time calcified into negative habits, character flaws, and tendencies that have become integral features of their personality. Yet, while it is important that we accept the realities of where we are coming from, we cannot afford to settle for who we are but strive daily towards becoming who we ought to be. There is simply no excuse or justification for a bad odor. Not even your temperament. So you must rid yourself of any and every ingredient that is not doing your personality mix a favor.
Honestly, having to confront myself two weeks ago, redefine some definitions and strategize for needful adjustment was not an easy engagement but you need to do the same. It won’t be easy admitting certain habits and character flaws either. You may, in fact, be surprised at the results you get when you demand and get a sincere feedback on your scent from your friends. But if you take the criticisms into right perspective and deliberately work on your flaws, you’ll not only end up with a positive remembrance package, but you will have better to offer your world and you will also have successfully removed the tiny but significant inhibitions on your path to maximizing opportunities and fulfilling your mandate on earth.
Developing a fragrance that’ll make the thought of you years after you’ve left that job, school, apartment, church, meeting or the earth itself laced with nostalgia and gratitude will no-doubt require devotion and consistency till the perfect blend is created. But if you can determine “how” you will be remembered, don’t leave it to chance. Be intentional about life, about your choices and work on your scent.
Deborah Adeojo. Writer, Speaker, Worship leader, Feminist and Communications professional in a romantic relationship with Jesus.