Thursday, April 15, 2010

Gifting 108 Meaningful Memories

To continue on our 108 Meaningful Memories… Gram has been working on similar books (akin to baby books for old people) for me for several years. Doing these projects gives her a purpose - fulfilling a request from her granddaughter – at a time when most other of her life purposes have long since passed. She calls on occasion with the things she has remembered by virtue of sitting down to complete her lists. She enjoys these projects very much and I've learned a great deal about her and my ancestors that I might not otherwise had the time to discover. I'll have the books and the lists well after she leaves us and will have them to pass on to the generations after me who will only know her by name and through photos.

She mentioned her book and list projects to one of her doctor’s recently. She told him how much it helps her by giving her something to do and how much pleasure she gets from returning the completed projects to me. Her doctor was so impressed he said he would seek out similar books for his Mom. A few weeks later, Gram received flowers from her doctor with a note of thanks for the great idea. The doctor did the same thing for his Mom and they’d been enjoying her projects together ever since.

Grandpa and Grandma were married for 62 years. Grandpa’s life centered on Grandma and, at her funeral, the loneliness of his future was visible on his face. A few weeks later, I sent him a blank journal and the lists of lists to write. I suggested it might be a way for him to honor Grandma and could help him by remembering some of their best moments together. A few weeks later, I received a Thank You card in the mail. Grandpa wrote to say I was number one on the list of people who helped him the most. I'm hoping to see Grandpa's lists at some point and will have the sweet memories of his life with Grandma to remember him through.

If there are some elderly loved ones in your life, send them the new and updated list of 108 Meaningful Memories and a blank journal. Mother’s and Father’s Day are both coming up soon…

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