Friday, December 9, 2011

Compassion for all

Our journey today took us to a senior living community down the street from us...
We arrived with a ringing bell, songs, evergreen branches, and a popcorn and cranberry garland which unraveled itself along the way...
My intention for this trip was to spread cheer to these elders, something which everyone deserves, especially during this time of year. The decision to organize came after I read that over 3 million elderly people will be 100% alone on Christmas.
I think of the families of these people; these individuals who have led such long and experienced hurtful it must be to feel so forgotten. I wonder why our society today tends to "forget" about the elderly or see them as a burden....

What we did was such a small gesture, but I believe it meant a lot to these folks.
I was hoping for this to be an exchange of songs, conversation, and some hugs...I didn't want the children to be incredibly fussed over, but...well, how could they not be? :) It was obvious from the moment we walked in that they were going to be a big deal. Some of them loved it. Some of them were shy. Some of them warmed up over time...
Some of them took a ride in the elevator... :)

While we sang many songs together, I couldn't help but take a look around the room....the women and men were smiling, laughing, clapping along....I felt so warmed and grateful in this moment.
The children brought such an electric and pure energy to this building. They ran around the downstairs, exploring the dining rooms, the kitchen, the hallways, the living rooms....the adults followed them with their eyes, remarking along the way. I can imagine that it felt wonderful to feel such freshness in a place like this...

This was a valuable lesson to the children. Through this experience, I believe they learned much about respect, kindness, and the value of giving....not the exchange of material things, but of something much bigger. Maybe they don't realize it right now, at this very moment, but I believe it will stay with them. They were also excited about the treat bags which were prepared for them...oh, candy. The bags will go home with them (no sugar here, folks!!!) and will hopefully be a reminder of the appreciation shown towards them:) 

We'll return to this facility again...perhaps Valentines Day and Easter. Although, we won't need a holiday to remember that everyone is deserving of cheer, compassion, and company...any day of the year.

Please remember the elders in your community...volunteer, visit, send cards/drawings...
It only takes a few moments to brighten the day of someone so deserving...


  1. What a wonderful activity for all. I would love it if you would share it at my Sharing Saturday party at Thank you!

  2. Thanks for showing us photos of the big day! You are right, it will stay permanently in the hearts of all involved!

  3. We have an "Adopt a Grandparent" program in my city. Sadly I just heard about it for this year but next year I'm going to sign up - I hope it runs for more than Christmas because really it should be an all-year thing. My mum used to work with seniors when I was growing up and it was wonderful to visit with them. I miss it and I'm sure these people were grateful for your visit.

  4. Sounds like an awesome experience all around! Brought tears to my eyes!


  5. what a wonderful and kind gesture. and i am sure you are right. it will stay with everyone involved!

  6. Oh Rebecca, you really touched my heart with this post! I often feel so sad for the way our culture regards the elderly! Thank you for this post, and for bringing the children for that visit! <3

  7. Wow, you're really one of a kind!!!!!
    Greetings from Severine

  8. How wonderful! Isn't it amazing how our "giving" ends up with us being gifted most of all?!


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