“Write a review of my life” the “Four Stars” prompt requests…! Frankly, I have never thought my life interesting enough to warrant written documentation, much less with such a grandiose ranking. Similarly, I have never really enjoyed talking about myself, likely for the same reasons. How I see myself, and how other see me, would probably wildly differ. However, If I had to sum it up in one phrase, for better or worse, it would probably be along the lines of: “kind and talented, despite it all.”
While I do care about how people perceive me, I don’t think when the dust finally settles in the hereafter a great deal of attention will be paid to my previous existence. In the scheme of the billions of people that roam the planet at any given moment, the attention I ultimately receive in the long run would be so minute as to be irrelevant. That said, if anyone were paying attention, or stumbled upon my dusty, disheveled remains in some archaeological dig, I suppose there may be a few high points that should accompany what is left of me. And let me say at the outset, I hate expressing myself in the first person!
Mary Angelini was a dedicated mother and devoted wife. She grew up the second oldest in a family of eight in Santa Barbara, CA before leaving for the Army in 1985. Mary served on active duty in the Army and was stationed in Ft. Knox, KY and in Camp Casey, South Korea before leaving active service for the Army Reserves, where she remained until 1993, achieving the rank of Sergeant in the JAG Corps.
After leaving active duty, Mary settled in Philadelphia, PA where she was briefly married to her Army sweetheart, and daughter’s father. After her divorce, Mary remained in Philadelphia for several years before accepting a job offer and relocating to Illinois where she remarried. Mary had a strong enthusiasm for travel, nature and the outdoors and would often plan detailed and adventurous vacations, particularly to the National Parks, and often fantasized about retiring to exotic and faraway places, surrounded by nature.
Though Mary paid the bills working as a paralegal, she had numerous talents, among which were drawing, painting and writing. However, she was best known for her photography, her true medium, and achieved a great deal of success (hey, I can dream!), despite discovering this passion later in life. Mary devoted much of her time to the study of her craft and would never say she perfected it but would say, like her, it was a work in progress.
Mary had a natural ability to learn virtually any skill quickly and was determined to work at it until she was satisfied that she’d mastered it at some level. For her it was equally about the challenge of learning as it was about the feeling that she’s mastered it (whether she had or not).
Despite being rough around the edges, Mary was a deeply sensitive and caring person. She would always help a friend in need and would sacrifice her own needs for those of others when necessary. Mary was also a champion of the underdog and was very vociferous in her views on many issues concerning social, political and religious topics. Although she was not one for starting a fight, she would vehemently defend someone who she perceived as being victimized.
More than anything Mary was a fighter and carried with her a determination not to be beaten, despite the many hardships she suffered in her life.
Blah, blah, blah! In summation, this feels to me just like a resume – fluffing up the mundane to project the outward appearance of a life filled with magnificent accomplishment. However, the proof is in the pudding, folks! I am only 48 years old now. Check back in about 30 years and we’ll see if, by then, we haven’t legitimately risen to the occasion.