A Life Lesson from Pictures

In loving memory of Michael McKeon

I recently took a character strength test, and one of my lowest rating strengths was zest. I stared at the results and fixated on this word. 


What does it mean? 

What would a life filled with zest look like?

What would living a life filled with zest feel like? How would it change me?

Who do I know who might have zest as one of their top strengths?

Earlier this week, a dear friend lost an older brother. I attended the wake last night, and received an unexpected gift of witnessing a life lived with zest.

It’s the endless receiving line that spilled out into the hall, a warm blanket of love.

It’s the music, setting the tone of ease, open arms, welcoming and soothing.

It’s the stories from so many different people, each one highlighting a man who showed up for his people and himself.

It’s the pictures, feet on the ground, grin on his face, eyes crinkled, arms exuberantly reaching toward the sky. Photographs that captured the essence of a life lived with zest.

The pictures whispered to me.

Take this in.


Celebrate each day.

Don’t be so serious.

Play music and tap your toes.

Let go & live life.

Make time for family, and friends, and taking care of your people.

Life is about knowing how to keep your feet on the ground while encouraging your spirit to leap in the air.

Michael’s spirit filled the room last night and radiated from each picture. He breathed his lesson into every single person in his life, and I am grateful to have had the chance to witness and experience the culmination of a life lived with zest. I will hold this lesson close to my heart and will do my best to share it with as many people as possible. What a beautiful person, what a generous lesson, what a glorious life.

Sending love to the McKeon’s…today & always.



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