The power of music to trigger memories is well documented in studies and by organizations such as Music and Memory . Singing with a loved one is a wonderful way to keep connected. Most folks have a song or two tucked away in their memory. A song learned when they were eight will remain with them when they are 80.
Mama was a messenger. Her life was a message that didn’t need words. This season also gave her family something else. Time. The extra time we were given allowed us the opportunity to show her honor.
At the end of the day, your loved one simply wants what we all want – to know we’re loved. Some days will be better than others, but remember: You’re doing the best you can, and so are they.
Since the Christmas season is chalk full of sensory delights, this is the perfect time to take advantage of anything that could stir up memories in your loved one.
Anything, no matter how silly it seems, if it helps your loved one feel as if they can still do something to contribute is a worthwhile activity.
I gave my friend some advice that I have been finding myself saying over and over: If it is at all possible, record your loved one’s voice while you still have the opportunity.
“I have lived this long, not due to making good choices, but rather making interesting choices – but then they turned out to be good.” – Allen Barker
John is a quiet soul, who prefers to stay in the background – usually at a piano and let his music do the talking.
She toddled over to one of the residents, smiled and reached her hand out to grab her walker. It was as if she put a nickel in the older lady.
Don’t forget to also engage your emotions. If you include your feelings, you are more likely you are to remember something.