In the month of November, we turn our minds towards all the reasons we have to be thankful. Thanksgiving is all about gathering with family and friends and celebrating with plenty of food, fun, and, of course, football.
As you sit around the table with your family and friends this Thanksgiving, take in who’s joining you. Make a point to be especially thankful for seniors who are with you. If you are blessed to have parents and grandparents still in your life, make sure they know how thankful you are for their presence.
Thanksgiving also provides the perfect opportunity to recognize these people and hear their amazing stories. With a little prompting, you can discover a multitude of life experience, personal struggles, wisdom, and joy. Hearing stories passed down from generation to generation is how we learn and grow. It gives us insight into their lives and what shaped them into the person that they are today.
We encourage you to put the cell phones down and mute the game even for a few minutes of quality time with your older loved ones. It will give you even more reasons to be thankful.
With that in mind, understand that you’ll have to ask some questions to get them to talk about themselves. Once you open a dialogue and show genuine interest in their lives, you’ll be amazed at what you can learn.
We are so thankful for all the seniors we have met along the way. They have taught us so much. We will always cherish their stories.
Encouraging older family and friends to talk about their lives and their experiences also shows that you recognize the importance of a legacy. You honor them and show them you are thankful for them being in your life. Maybe some of the questions and topics below will help start a dialogue. The conversation can be captivating and can remind you of what’s most important among your list of reasons to be thankful.
- What traditions did you have at Thanksgiving with your family when you were growing up (or Christmas or other holidays)?
- What was your first job when you were younger? How did you begin that type of work?
- How did you meet your husband/wife?
- What inventions or improvements in technology have you seen over the course of your life?
- What are you most proud of in your life? Why?
- Is there anything funny or crazy that you’ve done that you’ve never told anyone about?
- Do you have a favorite memory from your childhood or married life?
- Tell me what going to school was like for you.
- Is there anything you really wanted to do in your life, but didn’t get to do?
- What one lesson have you learned in your life that you’d like to share with me?
- Is there any event or person who changed the course of your life? Tell me about that.