Don’t cry for Alexia, she is in a far better place now. Cry for our loss of a wonderful young lady who had a talent for positively impacting the lives of others. Cry for our pain and deep sense of grief that threatens to overwhelm us and seems like it will be with us forever. But don’t cry for Alexia. Instead, let’s honor her memory. Let’s make others’ lives better just as she has made ours better.
Alexia loved and respected her parents. She never showed entitlement or animosity like so many young people in all generations have done. When her dad was in the hospital for surgery, she worried about him and made time to be home and help him recover. She never spoke of it as a burden or duty, but as an opportunity to help someone she loved and respected. She was so excited about her mother’s new job, because she knew how much less stress the better hours and weekends off would provide for her mom. She appreciated all the time and investment her parents made in helping her get her education and succeed in life. Don’t cry for Alexia; honor her memory by loving and respecting your parents.
Alexia was proud of her brother. She told me “He is different than me, but he has found his path and I am so happy for him.” She talked about and embraced his diversity rather than judging his differences. Don’t cry for Alexia; honor her by embracing the diversity of all our brothers and sisters. Support them and help them succeed at being them rather than asking them to be like us.
Alexia pursued excellence for noble reasons. Alexia studied hard and took classes to get great scores on her GMAT and LSAT, even while she was taking a full course load and working two jobs. I quizzed her about her motivation to work so hard, asking about the usual assumptions of getting good scores, to get into a good college, to get a great job, so eventually she could be rich and successful. But that was not her plan at all. She wanted high scores so she could get scholarships, so her parents would not have the extra burden of paying for her graduate school. Her plan B was to take a few years off and work to save money to pay for her extra schooling. Alexia owned her excellent outcomes. She made them happen and greatly appreciated rather than expected the help she got along the way. Don’t cry for Alexia; honor her by creating excellence in your life and not placing the burden on others.
Alexia made her work more than a job. Alexia didn’t want to just have a job as a Resident’s Assistant. We talked several times about how she wanted to work with her RA team to become the best dorm on campus. She wanted to impact the residents’ lives and provide a wonderful experience. Alexia didn’t just do a job; she brought her heart and passion to her work to create a fulfilling experience. Don’t cry for Alexia; honor her by creating purpose in your work and finding fulfillment in how you can help others.
Alexia implemented change. I work with many students and offer tips to help them be happier and more successful. I consider it a win if 2 of the 10 tips I offer are implemented. Small changes can make a big difference in people’s lives. Alexia implemented every tip I ever offered. She implemented them with excitement and vigor and shared them with her friends. She constantly worked to improve her life and make it better. Then she reached out and helped others improve their lives. Don’t cry for Alexia; honor her by making changes to make your life better, and along the way help someone else make their life better.
I don’t cry for Alexia. I know she is in a better place. I cry for my loss and my pain and my deep sadness. But I know that soon I will get past this grief and work to honor Alexia. I will learn from her example and try to be half the person she has taught us to be. Alexia led by example. She loved and respected her parents, embraced the diversity of her brothers and sisters, pursued excellence for noble reasons, turned a job into a fulfilling part of her life, and implemented changes to continuously make her life and the lives of others better.
Don’t cry for Alexia; honor her memory.