Sometimes on the coldest of days we can experience the most memorable of moments. Today was for me one of them where there just happened to be a number of stories told by others which will be stored away and considered as yet more memories to be cherished in the future. If any have ever visited a eldercare center and noticed how some of the residents are staring out windows and completely oblivious to their surroundings, I’m convinced they’re replaying their newsreels of past experiences. If you’d consider being the only one in a great movie theatre while an old movie is being played and nothing else around you matters in the darkness other than that footage, then you’d likely understand how acutely some memories can be re-played. I remember asking my aged grandmother what she was thinking about while seated out in our solarium and staring into the fields. She was a bit disturbed by me asking as if she’d been taken away from something more interesting while quickly responding to my question, “Nothing!” I felt as though I’d been cut down to my knees by that sharp response, but later realized I’d interrupted some great and wonderful past memory she was re-living.
After that happening, I realized how we must be all the more respectful of elderly people who simply want to be alone with their memories. My grandfather who lived with us some years before he died would also find a comfortable chair in a corner and gaze blankly out a window. He must have had archives of newsreels to be played before his passing due to the numerous hours he spent in his special chair and preferred spot while seated in his “theatre”. Too many believe our elderly must be constantly engaged with the here and now. What if they don’t want to be part of our “now”, but rather in their minds somewhere in their past? This is where elder respect begins.
My first cherished memory was in receiving a text from a longtime client/customer who was reflecting on the anniversary of a loved one’s death by saying, “I think of the great love as well as sorrows.” I responded by saying, “All beautiful roses still have their thorns.” I’m convinced people now believe long term relationships non-existent due to the unwillingness to deal with a few pricks from thorns that appear once in a while.
My second cherished memory was when a clerk in a store happened to engage me in conversation and started talking about her return to Mason City to take care of her parents. I said, “Do you miss being in the Dallas area?” She said, “Yes, and no. I miss all the things to do in Dallas, but I’m beginning to like Mason City because it’s got a slower pace and fewer people to where I can actually go somewhere near and be alone with nature.”
My third cherished memory was when someone arrived at my open house today and began speaking about how they wished they’d never sold their smaller well built home like the one I was hosting. The wife said, “As we’ve grown older, we’ve found our home too big for us. We have rooms that we don’t even enter for days at a time.” I said, “I’m finding it becoming more mainstream where buyers are insisting on less square footage but more quality.” She became a bit teary-eyed while looking around at the home’s quality.
My fourth and final cherish memory was yet another person who arrived at the home and after a while we started talking about vehicles. He’s a restorer of many things including vehicles. We had an exceptionally good chat about old cars including the amounts of money some people pay for them. Having owned an old vehicle in my youth, I understood the concept of people paying great prices for vintage autos. My take on it is there are many who believe owning something from their youth gives them real-life connections to past years which they hold more dearly.
In speaking about these cherished memories, I remembered a song I’d heard some years ago which speaks about relationship and happiness. With that in mind, I’m sharing with you that song which you can hear by clicking the above. Stay warm and safe during these cold winter days.