I think I have always been an old soul. I never felt as though I really fit into my generation. I generally gravitated toward people that were older than me. When I was a child, I was much more comfortable talking with older people. I would spend hours sitting on a front porch or in a living room, just asking questions to keep that person talking about life, ‘way back when’.
Old movies were a favorite and I read biographies, or I should say absorbed books about people. I read anything I could get my hands on about people’s lives and history. I even spent my lunch hours in high school in the library…just so I could have more time to read. Was I a geek? Or whatever that kind of a person is called these days. No, I really don’t think so. I did manage to stay involved in the life around me…but maybe that is a question better left for those I interacted with!
History and people have always fascinated me. I would love to just be plunked down in a small, abandoned town, and then ‘see’ it as it was 50, 75, or 100 years ago. I wish I could put that on a bucket list! I would make it happen. I’m not even that particular about what section of history I would like to adventure into. Any one would do.
When I became a nurses aid for the first time, when I was 19 years old, 30+ years ago, I absolutely loved it. I had found my little comfy corner. What better job than to be able to help the elderly, and then talk with them about their experiences! I met so many wonderful, interesting people that shared their memories with me. It was a privilege to be a part of that last little section of their lives!
I talked with a feisty, tiny, woman from London. She had spent her teenage years as a prostitute on the docks, at the turn of the century. She had language to go along with it! The stories she could tell! She married an older man when she was 19, and they moved to America shortly after. She had a family, was married and had a ‘proper’ life.
One man had made hand brakes for the President’s car. Another woman was 104, that summer of 1984. Can you imagine the sights she had seen? I relished the conversations I had with her! I can still remember what she looked like and her name. Again, it was a privilege to be a very small part of her life. I learned to shave whiskers with a straight razor and how to sharpen it on a leather strap.I am still amazed that the man trusted me enough to have me do it! So many wonderful memories from the year before I married.
So now, I have started working as a C.N.A. again, just part time, in the evenings. I worked at the same location a couple of years ago. But I worked the night shift for that year. I didn’t have the opportunity to talk very much with the residents.
I am excited to get to know the people there, and hear their stories. Although the age difference isn’t such a big gap anymore! I can actually remember some of the same things! It will take a bit of adjusting to get used to that one.
Please remember our older generation. They have a wealth of information unique to them. Take the time to chat and be interested in who they are. Someday…we will all be there. I want someone to care about me, and listen to my stories