A dear friend I've known for 50 years died recently. She and I often referred to each other as "soul sisters." We've seen each other through many ups and downs in those 50 years, so I will miss her terribly.
However, Carol's joyful, positive and beautiful spirit lives on in me and in her beloved family members and the other friends who loved her and benefited from her sunny personality. She faced many difficulties in her life, including health issues, the loss of her beloved husband and partner nine years before her own death, trials and tribulations with other family members, and much more. But she always kept her strong faith and her positive attitude. She considered herself blessed and lived a life of gratitude and of service to others. She retained a great sense of humor and a creative spirit that just didn't quit.
She and her husband, Jim, were role models to me in so many ways—not the least of which was in the role of grandparent. I learned so much from watching them, taking their examples and adding several of my own touches. I will ever be grateful for that.
Do you have people who were or are your role models or mentors? Are you aware of being a role model for anyone in your life?
It's important to be aware of those people and be grateful for their presence in your life. It's equally important to remember that someone may be watching your behavior and seeing you as a role model, too. As my sister often says, "Be an example, not a warning!"