I just retuned fom taking my children on a picnic lunch to visit my grandmother (their great grandmother) who is 96 at her retirment community. We try to stop by for lunch several times a month. The kids like playing with her stuffed animals and she, of course, loves having visitors and still loves to share stories of growing up on a farm with the kids. What I was especially struck by today though were the many similarities that exist on the bookends of life. As we pulled in the parking lot there were several elderly people sitting out on the front porch simply enjoying the sunlight of the beautiful day-may seem like nothing productive to someone else but they seemed to be fully enjoying themselves...just as my 3 year old and even my 5 and 6 year olds enjoy lying in the front yard sometimes watching the clouds go by. Walking through the building to her room the people are always so excited just by the sight of little children. A simple pleasure once again. My grandmother-undistracted by cell phone or computer fully engages with them through storytelling-no wonder they like these trips! And as I pulled out of the parking lot there was a woman slowly making her way across the parking lot with her walker, stopping on occasion to look at flowers or just take pause, reminding me so much of my 3 year old when we are going anywhere-always stopping to investigate anything that catches his interest. My charge-whether with my grandmother or with my 3 year old son is to slow down to that pace WITH them and soak in the presence of the people and beauty in my surroundings!
Emily Rempe is the Ohio Mom Congress delegate.