Grandparent's Day: Learning From Those Who Came Before Us

This month we observed Grandparent's Day. In the media, there have been stories and videos of families connecting with their loved ones both virtually and in-person, although with masks and socially distanced.

As states begin to loosen restrictions and schools reopen with in-person teaching, we have a glimmer of hope that life may be getting closer feeling more like a new normal. Despite this feeling, there are so many other challenges happening. The news headlines remind us that all is still not well.

Chaotic Times

There are fires raging on the West coast. The loss of life and property continues. Firefighters battle to contain the fires.

Civic unrest continues across the country. Political battles that are part and parcel with elections are ongoing, and likely to increase as the November election day nears.

Even now that we have been existing in Covid-19 mode for several months now, there are still disputes over wearing masks.

So, what does all of the above have to do with Grandparent's Day?

Honoring a Grandparent's  Life Lived and Lessons Learned

Our grandparents are living reminders that we can survive. These are people that lived through the Depression. They witnessed the polio epidemic and iron lungs. They have fought in wars and know the pain of losing friends and loved ones. These are the people who have helped shape our country.

They have walked the path before us. They can encourage us and help us manage in these times. We need to acknowledge all they have to offer as a natural resource.

As the character Lucy in the Peanuts comic strip from November 11, 1976 states, “We need to study the lives of great women like my grandmother. Talk to your own grandmother today.  Ask her questions. You’ll find she knows more than peanut butter cookies!”

Let us learn from them as we care and support them.

Kathy Dreyer, Ph.D., is an Advisor at AGE-u-cate® Training Institute, which develops and delivers innovative research-based aging and dementia training programs such as Dementia Live® and Compassionate Touch®, for professional and family caregivers;