What’s Named After You?
There comes a time in everyone’s life when you must reflect on the legacy that you might leave. My children call it whole-life; and they are only half kidding.
When I speak of a legacy, I don’t mean something you leave when you die; I mean something that remains when you leave a room. What impression of you remains?
Yesterday, I was reminded of several things that have been named after me. One of them is a suite of classrooms at Savannah Technical College.
When I first laid eyes on this honor I wept like a baby. The Bertice Berry Change and Transformation Classrooms bring me to tears every time I see them. (I stop by quite a bit and each time I do some student catches me and reports that “Some lady is looking in here crying.”)
A friend named a smoothie after me. "It's got everything you need and nothing you don't want," he says. I smile when I hear that he’s having a “Bad A—Bertice.”
Still one of the most amazing honors came rather spontaneously from a little boy. His mom and I are second sisters (not sisters by blood, but by spirit and choice.)
I was visiting her home and we’d gone to get her son Talyor from his school. Taylor is very shy, so I allowed him to take his time warming up to his new auntie. We got back to the house and he ran inside and began playing with balloons and so much to my sister Adri’s dismay, I decided to fill one with water. Her eyes grew wide and she asked what I had planned and I used my prerogative as an auntie to say, “Don’t worry about it.”
I took Taylor outside and showed him the texture, and unique bounce of the water balloon. At first, he played timidly, but he didn’t like it when I squirted water from the balloon onto the ground by their pool. So I dropped the balloon suddenly and Taylor squealed with delight as the water shot straight up in the air.
Taylor could not get enough of the fun and filled as many balloons as he possibly could.
I flew back home and the next day I was rewarded with a video of Taylor playing with what he now calls his berticeberry balloons. Adri says it’s the first thing he wants when he wakes up in the morning.
I’d like you to think about what and who has been named after you? What creation have you inspired?
Live your life so fully that when you leave, you still linger.
Be you, be well, be named.
Bertice Berry, PhD.