Saturday, March 3, 2012

Why I've Joined - SOLS 2

It's March 2nd or as of March 3rd we are pretending it's March 2nd.  On March 2nd I contemplated joining SOLS with more thoughts.  It was the second day and the whole idea of writing about little tidbits kept creeping into my thinking.  I first mentioned my grandmother as a writer this summer when I shared a poem she wrote, A Tribute.  I mention her leaving a collection of her writing.  Grandma showed me this collection two years ago as we were walking though her home.  She pulled out a clear bag with a stack of notepads and asked me, "Would you like Alleen's sickness diary?"  Alleen is my mother and I replied yes as I watched her pack the stack of notepads away and said in time.

Those notepads came home with me this past summer.  While I was excited to have these, I wasn't anxious to read them.  I left them in the trunk of my minivan for some time.  Then didn't want them to get ruined so I moved them to the inside of the front door.  I just wasn't ready to bring them in the house.  I finally brought them in and started reading them near the end of the summer from the beginning.  I read about half way through and have let them sit in my closet for months.  I just picked them up this week and find at times I can't put them down.  

I've learned these things about writing from my Grandma.  If it's personal and for you, go ahead and use initials for family members.  I'm an M, my sister is C, DS is my Dad because Di is my aunt.  F is my grandfather Fred and she even refers to herself as G for Gerry.  My grandparents owned a lumber yard and suppliers would give notepads to them that was made out of graph paper.  She used those to record her thoughts.  Next to each date she writes the day of the week.  This is a different kind of "container" for her writing.  She was faithful in using the same daily diary every day, year after year.  She really focused on how my mom was doing daily.  A daily record of medical treatments, emotional journey, visits, and a little bit about day to day life.  However, if a day went by she didn't hear from either of my parents she recorded the date and wrote, no news.

This personal narrative is a gift.  I've learned about things I lived but have forgotten.  My parents had incredible strength.  My extended family was so supportive even when I thought some weren't.  If I read carefully there is some wise advice.  I'm interested in continuing my reading even when I know the ending will be tough.  I'm thankful for this gift of writing.  Unless we write down our tidbits, we will lose them with time.   Maybe my grandma was/is trying to give me back something I've lost so I could move on and knew I would want to remember.

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