We are Memory Keepers

A couple of years ago I went to a talk given by some experts in the field of raising resilient children, I didn’t come away with anything I didn’t already know, but one thing did strike me and has stayed with me long since. She said that we are raising a generation of disconnected children, disconnected to their past and what makes them who they are. These days, our homes are clutter free and on trend and most likely lacking in photographs adorning walls……she asked us to think back to our homes growing up and whether this was the case. The resounding answer was no, our family homes had photographs everywhere, some of people we knew and had met, and others of our ancestors. More often than not, each photograph had a story or many more that went with it, and that’s how we knew about the generations before that.

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Recently I have been making more of an effort to pass down little snippets of my life as a child with Phoebe. It was no more poignant than Easter morning when my best friend gave all the kids a hot water bottle. Oh the memories that came flooding back, memories that each night when I make up the hot water bottles I tell my children.

Like how my Grandma, who my children never had the pleasure of meeting, always used to make me and my sister a hot water bottle when we stayed at her place on the school holidays in Rosebud. She would place them in our beds while we brushed our teeth and went to the toilet. When we came back and jumped under the covers our beds would already be warm and she would place the bottles on top of our little stomachs and then tuck us in for the night.

My Mum continued the tradition. She would stand by our kitchen sink after the kettle had boiled and the water had been carefully drizzled down the neck of it, and she would gently place it against her chest, lightly squeeze out the air and gently blow the steam out of it before she secured the cap.

I’ve loved remembering these small moments lately, but even more so, I have loved sharing them and passing them down to my own children. We are the memory keepers, but it is a responsibility to pass them on and make new ones with our children don’t you think?

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2 thoughts on “We are Memory Keepers

  1. The Renaissance Man says:

    You are so right. We have a responsibility to our kids and those around us to ensure the past isn’t lost. I have photos on my walls of my great grandparents. One of whom came out to Australia from Malta in the 1800’s and cut sugar cane in and around Mackay. I make sure all and sundry know my grandfathers story and my parents stories.. But memories can be triggered by so many things, the hot water bottle in your case by books, records, photos even little sayings. We are duty bound to share that history and enrich the lives of those around us.

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