Aren’t memories wonderful? They connect us to the past in such a unique way. In fact, they almost give the past a purpose, by making us what we are today. They can even become teaching tools for our present behavior. To remember is to honor. To honor is to value. What we value shapes who we become.
Memories can bring out our sense of gratitude and thanksgiving. They can become priceless moments we savor for years and years after the actual event. “We do not remember days. We remember moments.” – Cesare Pavese. Aren’t we all so thankful that we have that old photo or letter from some distant relative that freezes that moment in time for us?
Memories, good and difficult, unite and strengthen us. Who can forget the assassination of JFK or the attack on the Twin Towers on September 11? The remembrance brings us all to one moment on one day and unites us in our sorrow and national pride.
Memories give us a look into the past that is unique to each individual or group. No family remembers Christmases past like my family . . . . or yours. When my kiddos were little, we had a picnic under the Christmas tree after we had decorated it. We sang carols and talked about previous Christmases. Each picnic was a memory in itself and brought up other irreplaceable recollections of other picnics, gifts, surprises, Santa Claus stories, Christmas trees, decorations and hidden treasures.
Memories also remind us that the future brings more moments of remembrance. We can look forward to each new precious time that will become a future recollection that will feed our souls just as each past memory has done.
Memories for children are vital and necessary. As grandparents, part of our job is to provide those wonderful little moments of fun, joy, learning, surprise and hope.
Just by spending time with our children and grandchildren, by sharing our lives, our values, our loves and our treasures we give them small pictures etched in their minds for a lifetime. And the value of memories increases over time. What may seem trivial today could become priceless tomorrow. What may be a split second today may become a world of joy tomorrow. What seems meaningless today will become everything tomorrow.
So take that photo, write that letter, record that moment, celebrate everything, dress up, blow up balloons, light candles, set off firecrackers, make up a story, tell a joke, laugh, hug, bake a cake and always include the kids.
And you know what? Those moments become memories for us too!