Before Cancer Took Her Life, This Woman Penned Her Own Obituary
Lifestyle| | By Brian Delpozo
When 38-year-old Sonia Todd came to terms with the fact that she was dying of cancer several years ago, she began to think about how she would be remembered. Unhappy with the format of most obituaries, Todd decided to craft her own:
“My name is Sonia Todd, and I died of cancer at the age of 38. I decided to write my own obituary because they are usually written in a couple of different ways that I just don’t care for. Either, family or friends gather together, and list every minor accomplishment from cradle to grave in a timeline format, or they try and create one poetic last stanza about someone’s life that is so glowing one would think the deceased had been the living embodiment of a deity.
“The truth, or my version of it, is this: I just tried to do the best I could. Sometimes I succeeded, most of the time I failed, but I tried. For all of my crazy comments, jokes and complaints, I really did love people. I didn’t always do the right thing or say the right thing and when you come to the end of your life those are the things you really regret, the small simple things that hurt other people.
“Some folks told me that writing my own obituary was morbid, but I think it is great because I get a chance to say thank you to all the people who helped me along the way. Those who loved me, assisted me, cared for me, laughed with me and taught me things so that I could have a wonderful, happy life. I was blessed beyond measure by knowing all of you. That is what made my life worthwhile.”
Todd went on to explain what people in her life could do in tribute.
“If you think of me, and would like to do something in honor of my memory do this:
“– Volunteer at a school, church or library.
“– Write a letter to someone and tell them how they have had a positive effect on your life.
“– Stop at all lemonade-stands run by kids and brag about their product.
“– If you smoke – quit.
“– If you drink and drive – stop.
“– Forgive someone who doesn’t deserve it.
“– Turn off the electronics and take a kid out for ice cream and talk to them about their hopes and dreams.
“– Make someone smile today if it is in your power to do so.”
Though it’s been four years since Sonia Todd’s death, her powerful words still ring true. Her advice to “make someone smile today if it is in your power to do so” may be particularly necessary now more than ever.