In celebration of grandparents: Wisdom across the generations

Posted

This Sunday is Grandparents Day, a good opportunity to reflect on the importance of our elders in the lives of our families.

Whether by birth or through adoption, grandparents are treasures deserving of honor and respect. Like all of us, none were perfect, but most were there for us when we needed them most.

The wisdom of our elders is irrefutable. I distinctly remember so many ways my elders, especially my dear Grandma Minnie, influenced me by example.

Here is a baker’s dozen life lessons I learned at Minnie's kitchen table....

¨ If there's a problem, try to fix it. Minnie knew that "you'll sit a long time with your mouth wide open before a roasted chicken will fly in." Ignoring a problem is neither smart nor sensible.

¨ Words without deeds are empty. Someone who makes a promise and doesn't keep his word is an emotional thief. 'It's better to keep quiet than make a meaningless offer."  

I'm not alone in receiving the gift from my elders' life treasury. Family history is a living legacy. It’s not only the story of who our elders were, but it defines in many ways who we are.

Over the centuries, our nation has been populated by those whose life’s story is worth telling. Whether they came for freedom or by force in slavery, the values our grandparents brought with them are heirlooms which our children deserve to inherit.

Their sacrifices fueled our freedoms. Those who survived became advocates for causes and people who needed them...their life's mission was to make the world a bit better than the one they experienced.

Jack Levine, founder of the 4Generations Institute, is a family policy advocate based in Tallahassee. He may be reached at jack@4gen.org.

Comments

No comments on this story | Please log in to comment by clicking here
Please log in or register to add your comment