Over the past couple weeks, we have had lots of conversations with friends about Legacy. Lots of questions and perspectives about what that looks like for each person. Years ago after my cancer diagnoses I had the rare opportunity to look at my life and ask myself "How will you be remembered?" At that point in time I had lived my life pretty safely. I worked in the construction field off and on for over 20 years, raised my three kids, and hadn't really done anything remarkable to speak of up to that point. I was shocked, saddened and blessed to now have the chance to do something different...I was excited and had no idea what that was going to look like! It was just the beginning of my personal journey of self discovery and OH BOY....what a journey this has been! Since then I have discovered that I have the desire to contribute to the world in a BIG way! I was determined to donate my time and energy doing something that I love. The next step was finding a need and discovering the big question "What DO I love?"
When I was growing up, from the time I was 4 or 5 years old, I remember that I just loved singing and dancing. Looking back I remember my grandma Honey taking me, my sister and my cousin to see her mother in a nursing home. My great grandmother suffered from Alzheimers, not that I knew what that was at that time, I just knew this grandmother was different. She carried a baby doll with her and treated it as if it was a real baby and sometimes she could be really mean for no reason. My grandma Honey would have us sing to the residents at the nursing home. She would tell me that I was such a ham and that the residents loved when we sang to them. I would not just sing but do all the motions to the songs like: Rudolf the Red-nosed Reindeer, Silent Night or other songs were suggested for whatever occasion. Another memory that I have was one that Joshua takes great joy in sharing at our concerts, lol. When I was about that same age I loved singing the song Delta Dawn by Tanya Tucker soooooo much that I told anyone that would listen that I had in fact written that song! I joined church choirs and would sing ALL THE TIME pretty much anytime the opportunity came up...I just loved it! Over the years, with getting busy raising kids, I never really thought much about singing other than on road trips and around the house....basically I put it on the back burner. Until Joshua and I started dating. Crazy that neither one of us knew that the other enjoyed singing and playing music until then. We had been friends for several years and we had no idea!!! So when we started singing together we were having sooooo much fun. I learned that his dream was to become a music producer by the time he was 50...just look at him go (not even close to 50 yet lol) More on his dream later ;) I just know that I LOVE to sing and each time I perform the desire to do more grows!!! I wanted to do more and we were taught through our personal development journey to find a need and fill it. So, I started contacting local assisted living, senior care and Alzheimer care communities in our area. We booked 20 different communities just like that near our home town! We decided that if the need was THIS BIG in just our area we could do this all around the US!! We set a date of January 1, 2016 with a whole 8 shows booked. We headed out on the road to serve the elderly communities in this country! In our first year we served over 200 communities in 20 different states!!! We continue to grow, DREAM BIG and serve these communities as well as many more around the country. Still learning, defining, and fine-tuning our mission as we travel.
One thing I know for sure, I have learned through this journey the importance of the people in our lives. We have 3 grown children and 5 grand children. One of our biggest concerns when deciding to leave and travel full time to follow our dream was leaving our children/grand children. I was afraid that being away from them for long periods of time was going to be a disaster for our relationships. Not only that....we wouldn't be available to help them if they needed us. However, what we have found is....our kids have blossomed into capable adults since we left! As for our relationships, I feel that we have grown closer. We are not in their daily business, they are growing and learning without our help (and we are just a phone call away). We value the time we get to spend together and see that it is not the quantity of time that we spend instead it is the quality of time that we get to spend together. With the technology available now we connect regularly by video chats, texting, and -when available- I send postcards from the places we get to visit. I get to pour into my family even when I am not in the same town. What I love most is seeing the legacy I have already created (and continue to feed through my own growth) in each of them. Our children are kind, loving, compassionate, generous, courageous, fun, and so much more! I love watching them share these gifts with their children, watching them grow, learn how to set healthy boundaries, learning to take care of themselves and DREAMING BIG!!!
I am no longer saddened or believe that I haven't made a big enough impact in this world because I know that I am following my heart, living my dreams, growing, learning, and teaching by example- everything that I want to see different in the world I GET TO BE!!! So if I want to see kindness, peace, love, generosity, joyfulness...I get to be the one who takes the first step and show my children how it works first! It is just that simple like walking, running, talking or potty training lol