I write the following with no sense of morbidity. The first time my father almost died, I joked with him about what our obituaries or tombstones would say as he was recovering (some people might think that is a bit insensitive or odd, but it worked for us).
My mother and I have also talked a few times about what makes a great obituary. I have read a few that I loved. Mrs. G posted a wonderful obituary to her blog and this reminded me that I had been determined to make a start on my own.
It is a tremendously difficult task to create a portrait in words contained in just a few paragraphs. I do think it is a task worth undertaking when I think it may be the only "knowing" of us that a descendant may have.
Here is my first shot at it:
Kelly is eternally grateful for the great sex, delicious food, music, books, and most ardently for her family especially her wise and beautiful children.
Her life goals included:
becoming half as good a woman as her mama
sharing the bleak Irish humor she inherited from her grandfather John Kelly with those she loved at the most importunate times
eating all the cake
being an O.K. - enough human being to merit the love of her many fine canine companions
keeping her teeth and hair
practicing patience and kindness and ecstatic mental yoga
Depending upon which of her friends or family you speak to, she was either a great success or an abject failure at achieving her goals. All will agree that she was trying.