Scrapbooking As A Lifeline
Sometimes memories are all you have.
My family is at a difficult stage of life right now, as my 80-year-old mother is showing increasing levels of dementia. She needs to be reminded where she is, what we?re doing, whom she is with?even what she likes?and she?s fond of telling tales from long, long ago?sometimes repeating the same stories ten minutes later.
I am especially grateful now that she had let me start scrapbooking her huge stash of family pictures over a year ago. The stories and details she shared with me as we sorted the pictures at that time have become so much more than just journaling facts for our family history. As she recedes into her long-term memories, the information she shared while still in the world of reality have given me a way to relate with her that I didn?t have before.
When I originally sat down with her to gather this information, I confess that it was not for her sake, but to save those identities & family histories from being lost forever, so I could include them for our family heritage. I had no way of knowing then that God wasn?t just saving them for a faceless future?He was preparing for a time when Mom would need someone to connect with. He gave me that information as a gift of connection with my Mom so she won?t be alone in her memories in her final years.
So now, I can guide her as she retells the stories, and what a delight to see her face light up as she recalls the scenes again. This was a benefit I did not expect from scrapbooking?but it is certainly one I welcome, and I encourage you to scrapbook your aging relatives? lives not just for the future?but to be able to minister with those same stories. And if you are not a scrapbooker yourself, there are professional scrapbook artists who will take the information you gather and put it in book form--but the important thing I discovered with my Mom is that the process was so much more important than the finished product.
About the Author: Kate Rothacker is a mom, wife, daughter, & sister, which gives her plenty of material to scrapbook--but requests by friends and family led her begin to scrapbook professionally for others. She also leads weekend scrapbooking events, teaches workshops, & creates custom designs under the name Local Memories Scrapbook Services (http://www.localmemories.com).