Have the Talk of a Lifetime


By Kathleen M. Berry, CFSP

Kathleen M. Berry & Associates International Memorialization Supply Association

A few months back, I was invited back to my alma mater to listen to a very dear man, mentor and teacher give his thoughts and share words of wisdom one more time to the crowd in attendance. He was traveling to the Order’s retirement community and wanted to leave us with some parting wisdom.  As he began, he talked about his life on campus, the years of teaching and the many lives that had touched him over the years. He took the time to introduce his family to all and his final thoughts centered on forgiveness. He imparted good words to be remembered…as he always did in class.  After he was done, the microphone was passed amongst the crowd.  Some told stories of antics from the past; many gave open thanks to him for making a difference in their lives; everyone talked about his stick figures on the chalk board; a number spoke to how he married them and baptized their children, but, truly, we were all there to thank him and let him know how much he was loved!   I visited with him afterwards and he said to me that his body does not have the energy it used to…the mind is good, the body, not so much! I wished him well, told him that I loved him and squeezed his hand…he smiled in that familiar way.  He was giving his final formal session on campus. Throughout the evening there were tears, laughter and such sharing…and before I knew it…we were having “the Talk!”  It was with my school community, a man we loved and it was so very awesome! Remember, next time you are in a room, having a grand time sharing memories, before you know it…you too, will be having “the Talk!”

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