National Grandparents Day – A Family CelebrationBy Jill Poser September 7, 2012 | 10:00 AMPosted in: Senior Safety, Family
I was blessed to enjoy all four of my grandparents during my
formative years and two lived through my late thirties. We lived a car ride
away and saw them almost every week and all the holidays I can remember. I was
showered with so much unconditional love and kindness. They knew my strengths
and my weaknesses, yet, with them I felt perfect! All the stories they shared,
the laughter, the wonderful recipes, the love, little gifts and sometimes big
gifts, just because. So when my children and I were relocating from Houston,
Texas there was only one place we could live! My parents had moved to south
Florida and my Grandma was already living here.
After ten years of living across the country we would finally get to be
local. This was a dream come true. By the time we relocated, my grandma was
diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease and she was using a medical
alert system. She would fade in and out cognitively but we visited her every
Sunday until she passed away. The kids
and I would be so excited when something jogged her memory and she acknowledged
us. The kids would sing, we would tell
her stories or sometimes we would all sit in the quiet and just be
together. Is there anything better?
All the years, near or far, my parents and I were determined that
my children would enjoy the same kind of relationship with their grandparents
as I did with mine. My folks visited us
in Houston every eight to ten weeks. We called my mom every morning and she
sang the Barney song with my older son.
We celebrated everything we could think of and made little things
important. When we moved to south Florida we did not skip a beat! It is ten years since we moved and my
children have endless memories with their grandparents. Their grandparents understand each and treat
them as individuals. They have special
little things with them and make them feel special all the time. Is it any
wonder that when my Dad was not well his grandchildren honored him with endless
love and attention?
On September 9,
2012 we will celebrate the 33rd anniversary of National Grandparents
Day. Like Mother's Day and Father's Day, it is a family celebration and a
chance to honor the important role grandparents play in children's lives. At
the time President Jimmy Carter signed the proclamation creating National
Grandparents Day, there were approximately 17 million grandparents in the
United States. Little did anyone know
how it would grow and barely a generation later, there are now more than 70
million grandparents in our nation.
Did you know that
there is an official song of the U.S. National Grandparents Day holiday? It is
called A Song for Grandma and Grandpa written by
Johnny Prill. We even have an official flower to honor this day. That’s right; the official flower of the U.S.
National Grandparents Day is the forget-me-not.
How appropriate a name for such an occasion!
Honor this day
with gratitude and special attention for the people you love who have given so
much and ask so little in return.
Flowers, a note, a photo, a song, a simple expression of love;
show up in ways that count and make that difference.
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