Six reasons you should be the memory keeper.
Why should you be the memory keeper? Memory keeping could be the job of anyone in the family.
Collecting family memories of your life today and of the past as well, can be a challenge. You know that as time passes, recalling details will become more difficult. Starting this process really can’t happen too soon!
Types of memories
The first side to preserving your family’s memories is collecting memories from your past, from older relatives, parents, and grandparents.
Sorting photos, talking to family, checking out sources such as Ancestry or Family Search, and other research activities will be required. This type of memory gathering and keeping can be very rewarding, but time-consuming and sometimes difficult.
How much do you know about your family’s history? Who will preserve their stories and history when they are gone? Eventually, your parents or grandparents won’t be around to tell it themselves. It’s up to you to carry on or your family’s history will forever be lost.
The other side is finding a way to preserve those memories that you’re making in your life now, each day. There is no doubt that preserving those memories as you go will be worth the effort many years from now.
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Here are six reasons for memory keeping:
1. Memories fade.
You think you’ll remember when your sweet little boy’s first tooth came in or when he took his first steps. Believe me, you won’t remember. And neither will he. But just think how fun it would be to show him pictures of himself when he’s older and tell him the stories about his young childhood.
Memories fade over time, details become distorted, and the things you think you remember may or may not have really happened. Being a memory keeper preserves those precious times you might otherwise forget. Be the memory keeper who helps reinforce memories with photos and words.
2. See how far you’ve come.
By keeping your memories today, you will be able to look back one day and see how far you’ve come. You will be able to reminisce about the past and review the changes that have happened over the years. Relive proud moments, happiness and special times.
Memory keeping enables you to forever capture a moment, allowing you to see the progression of your life. Be the memory keeper who makes it possible to share these memories.
3. Time for reflection.
Writing about your life today creates a journal or guide to the person you are at this moment. Years from now, you will be able to look back and know what you were thinking, the type of person you were and reflect on who you’ve become since.
You may learn things about yourself that you didn’t even realize at the time. Lessons you’ve learned, moments your were courageous, and reasons you may have succeeded or failed can all become more apparent when looking back at your past.
Take time to write about your life through a journal or just by making captions for your photos. Be the memory keeper by creating a way to reflect on your life in the future.
4. A record for your children and grandchildren.
Keeping a record, taking photos, and telling stories help to preserve part of the identity, the legacy, the impact of your life, and the lives of your family members. Memories give comfort, warmth and a feeling of belonging.
Having something concrete to remind your children and grandchildren about the places they’ve been, the laughter they’ve shared, and the time spent together is invaluable. Be the memory keeper who takes time to make a record for the children and grandchildren.
5. Remember the mundane, everyday moments.
Most people will remember their prom, graduation, wedding or other major events in their lives. However, it’s the little things that we are most apt to forget. Things like swinging on the swingset in the backyard, swimming in the lake, the first day your daughter drove the car or when the brownies you made were burned to a crisp. Or even when your son emptied the Kleenex box tissue by tissue or dumped the baby powder all over the house. (yes, that happened)
These little, seemingly insignificant things can be recorded and held in our memories. Looking back on simpler times, the funny days, happy moments or kind gestures can happen if you take time to be the memory keeper.
6. Healthy adjustment and well-being.
The Journal of Family Life, created and produced by the Emory Center for Myth and Ritual in American Life (MARIAL) is interdisciplinary and peer-reviewed. The journal is funded by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. According to their study “children who know stories about relatives who came before them show higher levels of emotional well-being, according to Emory University researchers who analyzed dinnertime conversations and other measures of how well families work.” You can read more about their study here. Be the memory keeper that adds to the well-being of your family.
So why should you be the memory keeper?
There are many reasons to preserve family memories for the future. You want your family to experience all of those advantages.
If you don’t do it, it’s possible no one will. And even if others do contribute, you are the only one who sees the world from your perspective.
Tell your own story. Tell your family story. Give the world a way to remember.
Be the memory keeper because your family will benefit. And you will, too, in ways you may not even imagine…
Keep Passing Down the Love,