As you may know if you read my blog often, I have quite a close relationship with my Grandma. Growing up her and my Granddad had a lot of influence during my childhood, they taught me various things, and I knew I could always count on them. I could never repay them for the things they did for me when I was younger, not just the guidance and support they offered me, but for the gifts, and the holidays. That doesn’t mean that I won’t try and show them how much they mean to me, and how thankful I am for all they did. I recently heard about a campaign that Fairfield Care were running, and I knew straight away I wanted to get involved. The campaign is called #ShareTheLove.
With it being Valentine’s day this month, it was the perfect time for the campaign to be running. The folks at Fairfield care believe that it is important to remember what a visit to our grandparents can mean. They think that the day shouldn’t just be for celebrating the love we have for our spouses, but also the other people we love the most, especially as our grandparents and I must say I agree. Our grandparents need our love and care, now more than ever. In my Grandma’s case, Valentine’s day is hard, my Grandad passed away in 2009 and since then she has never been the same. She misses him constantly, as we all do but I believe for her its heightened. They were married for years, and he was her soul mate. It is also hard as Valentine’s day is the day before my granddad’s birthday.
We decided to take my Grandma out for breakfast, something that we don’t get to do often but something that I knew she would enjoy. There is nothing better than a change of scenery and being in someone else’s company. While as a couple Sam and I don’t celebrate valentine’s day, I knew that it meant a lot to her, to have company on a day she finds hard. I never actually sat and thought about how she might feel on that day. We are thinking of making it a new yearly tradition now.
Emily had lots of fun spending time with her great grandma, they did some colouring, and Emily helped herself to most of my grandma’s breakfast, not that either of them were worried about sharing, they were happy to go up and get more. After breakfast, rather than dropping grandma back home, she came to spend the day at our house, and enjoyed playing with Emily. I love watching their bond develop and It is nice to hear my grandma tell her stories about my grandad. After all she never got to meet him, and I want her to know about such an important part of our family. I hope that one day, she will know of him through our memories.
So, just take a second to think about your grandparents, or even your parents. Most are retired now, if they don’t have something to do – or someone to spend that new-found time with, imagine how slow and lonesome the days can get. You might be surprised to learn that 51% of all people ages 75 and over live on their own, while 17% of older people have contact with family, friends and neighbours less than once a week, and 11% have contact less than once a month (facts collected by Campaign to end loneliness). Can you imagine not seeing someone for a whole month? Being all by yourself with no one to talk to, no one to listen, and nothing to do..
I hope that I inspire just one person to pick up the phone, or visit their loved ones. Let me know in the comments If you do. It doesn’t have to be a meal out, or anything fancy, just seeing your face or hearing your voice is enough.