Tuesday, April 3, 2012


Footprints coupleWow, what a gorgeous day! This morning, I watched a couple of deer frolicking and foraging in the back yard, along with some squirrels chasing each other. Birds were everywhere, I could hear the turkeys, and later on, I saw two rabbits chasing each other and a raccoon right outside the basement window chowing down on something. I commented on Facebook that our back yard looked like Disney! After running some errands, I did my workout and then spent some time out on the deck reading and soaking up some sun. It’s supposed to cool off again, but today was about as perfect as it gets. I hope your day was as pleasant (and for any Dallas-area readers, I hope you and yours are safe)!

Later this afternoon, I was reading some old entries and old correspondence, and it made me think about some things. In general, what we leave behind when we’re gone, and specifically, what I got and what lessons I learned from my parents.

From my Dad, I’d say that I got a love for books, travel, and a general curiosity about the world. From Mom, I got a sense of compassion for others, as well as a somewhat rather very strong streak of stubbornness. The latter is a double-edged sword: it can make me determined to do something, or it can make me dig in my heels about something even when I know I shouldn’t.

Both parents gave me a love for nature, an appreciation of history and our roots, and a sense of fairness and justice. I still can’t stand to see someone bullied, and I will step in if I see it happening. That means that I also have a strong aversion to being bullied myself, and attempts at intimidation and manipulation are more than unwelcome...it makes me distrust and dislike such a person when they behave that way. I’d say I have what amounts to zero tolerance for such behavior.

So it makes me feel sad when I see that sort of legacy being passed on to others. I feel like I got so many good things from my parents, and it’s a shame when people pass long bad traits, including their own biases, neuroses, and manipulative behavior.

There are ways other than popping out a kid to leave a legacy. In every job that I’ve had, I left on good terms with the majority of people; I still have friends from high school and college; I’ve had people tell me that I inspired them in one way or another; and I taught many students and new employees in the lab over the years—technologists who have gone on to provide a valuable service to patients. I am far from a perfect person, and undoubtedly I have disappointed some...but I don’t believe I’ve influenced any other person to be angry or hateful in reflection of my own image. Because that is just not me.

That’s a legacy I’ll be happy to leave.


  1. ... that is not a bad legacy at all... in fact, there are more notable people who will not be able to leave a legacy as noteworthy as yours..!

  2. It is a shame when the bad is allowed to smother the good...


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