Hello Penny Darlings!
I just got back from vacation and I had TONS to catch up on and some big and exciting posts coming up in the near future – so I thought I would do a little bit less dense of a blog post today. I’ve been wanting to write this forever and today seemed like a perfect day to do this!
As some close friends may know (and new readers and friends may not!) – my grandmother, and last surviving grandparent, passed away in the spring of 2016. We were very close and my mom and I spent the last part of her life being her caretakers.
Here’s a snap of my mom & my grandma for Christmas 2015!
My grandmother suffered for most of our time together from Dimentia, which caused her to have almost no short term memory and to slowly lose some of her long term memories. It began in the early stages when I was as young as nine and only continued to get worse as she got older.
When my grandmother passed away, I found years and years of journals ranging from the 1970’s all the way to 2008.
Her early entries were electric. Long Island socialite who loved a glass of wine and dancing the night away at a party. One particular funny story was when she and some neighbors had a New Year’s Eve party, got a little TOO rambunctious, and pushed a large piano down a very steep hill while they all cheered! You can never say that Joan Lawson wasn’t a bad ass.
But in the 1980’s and then in the 1990’s – my grandmother lost her two eldest sons in two separate tragic cases (meaning my mom lost two of her three brothers) and that loss was very hard on her and my grandfather so those years reflect sadness, grief, mourning, and pain.
In the late 1990’s my grandmother reflected her blessings with myself and her other grandchildren, her friends, my grandfather, and our family as she coped and dealt with those losses. It reflected happy memories of what movies she saw, plays she had seen, and dinners she had eaten. She fretted about her weight and her hair.
Here’s me & my grandma “doing yogurt” in the 1990’s!
In the early 2000’s – my grandmother began documenting losing her memory, recounted shame and embarrassment from forgetting something in a social setting, to little victories like remembering how to get home from the grocery store.
Somewhere in the late nineties and early 2000’s in the back of my grandmother’s journal – I found a quiz written in her journal. The journal had purple butterflies on it and was filled on every page with her messy cursive scrawl.
And I read the quiz over and over again. Five or six times, over and over.
I asked myself these questions. A love quiz. Was I doing these things?
So in honor of my grandmother today – I’d like everyone to take her quiz and reflect on the love in your life, your choices to bring joy to yourself today, and what you are doing for those that you love.
A Grandmother’s Happiness Quiz
1.) Is anyone a little happier because I came along today?
2.) Did I leave any concrete evidence of my kindness or any sign of my love today?
3.) Did I try to think of someone I know in a more positive light?
4.) Did I help someone to feel joy, to laugh, or at least, to smile?
5.) Have I attempted to remove a little of the rust that is corroding my relationships?
6.) Have I gone through the day without fretting over what I don’t have and celebrating the things I do have?
7.) Have I forgiven others for being less than perfect?
8.) Have I forgiven myself?
9.) Have I learned something new about life, living, or love?
These were questions my grandmother tried to ask herself daily.
To consider what impact you were having on others and what impact that was having on your own happiness.
Ever since I found this journal page – it has resonated strongly with me.
So my challenge is to you today to consider all of thes questions in honor of Joan!
SO HERE’S THE “END OF BLOG” SPIEL!
The next few weeks have some awesome stuff planned! I’ll be doing a post with Eloquii and Swap.com, as well as more Gwynnie Bee & Society+ stuff, a cosmetic post, a PJ party post, and more! And I’m finally doing the chub rub post next week! Stay tuned for that!
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Love all you wonderful ladies (and gents!) out there!