Thank you, Gramma…I will do my best to honor you.

Some of the blog below is also in the Video Blog;

There is an ongoing joke on my Dad’s side of the family that if we all pair up with gentle spirits, the Stever blood will be watered down and reach a gentle simmer. Stevers are hot-headed, passionate, artistic, creative fighters. We are as passionate about love as we are about work. We are as hot-headed about protecting our families as we are about winning a fight. We live and breathe music, we are slightly demented and can be somewhat overwhelming at any function we attend. I like all those things about us.

Every generation in the Stever family seems to have found a gentler counterpart. My Grampa Stever married a wonderful lady in my Gramma Stever. Maybe that is our need to be controlling and dominating or maybe we just look for people outside of the family who will balance us out a bit and calm us down. Historically this has happened. My Dad like many of his brothers found very gentle (dare I say subservient) women. Most of my aunts (like my Mother) seem to be angels and have probably put up with more than their share from the Stevers.

My Mother’s side of the family is very different. Mom came from two angels. (This made her 100% Angel…heehee) My Grampa was the sweetest man on earth and my Gramma was a consistently loving, nurturing Mother.

Gramma passed away Monday morning. She had a massive stroke at the age of 92. Gramma was somebody you could count on for anything. She lived a very good life and had 25 great-grandchildren!

I am sad about it, but that is a very long life. My saddest moments came from seeing Gramma at my Mother’s bedside when she was dying. Gramma felt that was the wrong order of things and I think she took Mom’s death harder than anyone.

I was struck with the thought today that Gramma was the last of the generations directly above me to go. Gramma and Grampa Stever were gone, then my other Grampa died, now Gramma. My Mom and Dad are gone too. I now have no Parents or Grandparents. This leaves me at the top of my generation. Of course I have aunts and uncles and cousins etc, but I mean the direct line down from Grandparents to Parents to me. It’s an odd thought.

I have been thinking about the word legacy today and what it means to leave your legacy. We think of it monetarily, we think of it as who will carry on a family name or who will pick up the family business. I think of the word legacy more like what piece of my Grandparents and Parents should be kept going.

The problem with money and material legacy is that a disaster or fire could take that away. It’s lovely to honor someone by having a museum or shrine, but manmade things can be destroyed. If that is the only legacy you are keeping, you could be setting yourself up to have it all taken away.

My Gramma was a gentle spirit. She was tough and consistent but ever so compassionate and loving. The biggest way to ignore her legacy would be to not practice the best parts of her character. My Mother was not gentle and compassionate by mistake, she saw it in her Parents. These Angels worked hard to be loving, broke down barriers with their forgiveness and love and it would be a slap in all their faces to not practice the things they instilled in me.

The best way to carry on our loved ones legacy is to keep their character intact. We can do this by taking the things we have learned from them; the love, the forgiveness and the compassion and show it to others. This shows the world that your family name means something.

Are you able to pass on the best traits of those who have gone before you? Do you feel they were watered down or seem lost? Can you recapture them like scrapbook memories and reintroduce them to the next generation who never knew them? How are you doing this?

Passing love down the line,
Karen :)

“I would want my legacy to be that I was a great son, father and friend” ~Dante Hall
I think that is a good legacy. For those of us who have received this legacy, what are we doing with the information? What have we received from someone who is a great son, daughter, Father, Mother, sister, brother or friend? What is the point of them leaving it to us? What do we do with the good things they have shared?

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