Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Gone but not forgotten

This has been another momentous year in heritage and legacy preservation for Heirloom Biography. We have completed 6 new biographies, 3 tributes, 2 kidographies and 1 corporate heritage. Working with families who "get" the value of story chronicling - who are generous and kind in archiving their loved ones' life story, makes our work so rewarding.

We have just about completed our rebranding under our new name "TimeStories". Look for the launch in early 2011 as We wanted to make it clear that "every age has a story to tell", not just seniors!

Several families we have worked with over the years have since lost the elder person whose story we saved. We have attended a few wakes and funerals, yet none were consumed with loss. There was a joy for the person and their life, perhaps because they knew time couldn't be stopped, but also, perhaps, because they knew they could always remember them by watching the biography we made. A few families played sections of the bios at the receptions afterwards making it seem less harsh and just a little strange. Strange that the mortal body had moved on but the spirit and idiosyncrasies remained all around. Laughing at the comments of their dearly departed reminded me of the New Orleans custom of Jazz Funerals and "second lining". Some even played the deceased's favorite music, and dancing was not uncommon.

I pass on another link to a touching video that speaks to this phenomena of remembering the awkward and (too?) personal as well as the presentable parts of a person. We are composite wholes of many traits, characteristics and habits that define us as who we really are. One cannot separate the weird or unpleasant from the charming. This video touches on just those "imperfections".

As Shakespeare said, "All the world's a stage, and all the men and women merely players; they have their exits and their entrances; and one man in his time plays many parts..."

Make the effort to save what took years to develop - a unique, irreplaceable personality - with all the good and bad rolled into one. They ultimately define where you came from and, more importantly, why you came here.