One of my favorite things during this time of year are the Christmas lights. I love Christmas lights.
As a child, my family and I would go out driving just to see how all the neighbors put up different lights and pick the houses that we liked the best. My neighbor across the street has their house all decked out with lights and every time I walk into my living room in the evening, I take a few moments and just stop and look at the lights.
Sometimes I giggle quietly to myself because they remind me of how my parents used to debate quite frequently about how many lights my dad should put up. He had a good eye for decorating, so he usually got his way in terms of how he wanted the house to look.
I finally got the combination of good weather, time and energy so I was able to go out and finish the banisters and the light pole in the front yard. My decorations are simple, but I like them and I think my parents would like them also.
Though mom can't retrieve her memories about Christmases past, it's important for me to make these Christmases as special as I possibly can. Feeling good about having done my best in a really challenging situation is the memory that I want to carry.
I'll decorate the house so that it looks festive and we can both enjoy it. I'll put on the Christmas music that mom loves and we'll just hold hands and enjoy it. Thinking about what I want and need is essential for setting the foundation for those memories that I want to carry.
Using my love of Christmas lights as a foundation helps me build the memories I want to have from my current life. My goal is to create experiences in this part of my life that I can remember as fondly as memories from my earlier part of my life.
My encouragement for you this week is to do something that will create a memory that you want to carry.
Be well until next time!
Dr. Sheri L. Yarbrough is an author, dementia caregiver, and founder of Praxis Senior Care-Giving Solutions, a consulting business that provides care-givers with practical and easily implemented strategies that can be tailored to meet their individual care needs.
View Dr. Yarbrough's weekly blog on all things caregiving from a caregiver's perspective.