My lovely Grandma is 95, on June 3rd she will be 96. She was born in 1919, just think of the changes she has seen in her life time. How did she get this old in such good shape? She did some things right and some things could have been better. I want to talk about that in the hopes we can have a life as full and beautiful as she has.
She grew up in a small town, worked in the city for a bit during the war. Then met Grandpa and moved to the middle of nowhere. A place close to Antelope Sk. They had a mixed farm for many years. Life sounded very simple, sun comes up, get up and work. Sun goes down, go to bed, then repeat.
But they had a dance at their barn in the warmer months, and there where the working party’s that went farm to farm to help with the larger projects. Food was simple, work was hard, friends where fantastic. Even now, most of her friends are gone but the children and grandchildren stop into where she lives and check in on her. It is really fantastic for them to do that.
They retired and lived in Swift Current for the last 40 years. A lovely town full of farmers and recently some oil workers. They did some traveling, worked a bunch organizing the local co-op and some other charities. Met friends and socialized.
At 93 my Grandpa passes away. He had a very interesting life, his dad died when he was 13 and he left school to help on the farm. At 15-16 he was riding the trains as a hobo finding work in Alberta (even back then everyone goes to AB to work) sending the money home. He was the first man in Canada on dialysis. He was crushed by a tractor and his kidney failed. Luckily he recovered. He had cancer a few times, some wild farming accidents but all the time a true gentleman. Always wore a jacket and tie in town and tipped his hat to all.
After Grandpa died Grandma’s coping skills fell apart. She mostly stays in her room and just sits. We do our best to get her out and socializing but she is so so at it. As you age you need a plan when someone dies before you. You need to develop interests and hobbies, social circles long before you “need” them.
I was lucky on both sides of my family I had the perfect Grandparents. They taught my brother and I all sorts of interesting things. Showed us love and discipline and an example of how to behave (not always followed). I miss them dearly and I hope you can be that kind of Grandparent to your grand-kids.
While I can still enjoy my Grandma we travel to see her when we can and phone often. She always thanks me for calling saying how enjoyable it is. I always say it is my pleasure to hear her.
Have you called your Grandparents lately?
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