A New Year begins, but we never completely forget the past one. Memories connect our years and compose the very fabric of our lives. Happy memories we tuck safely within our hearts to encourage us during darker times. Unpleasant memories we often file away in the recesses of our brains and try to forget. As long as we live we never stop building memories.

Although with age they may find it sometimes challenging to recall certain details, elderly people often enjoy sharing their memories. By telling about their past, they have a chance to relive it while entertaining those who take the time to listen. Younger listeners may have history brought to life as they listen to stories told by people who actually lived through those times.

Once we complete our earthly journey, we leave memories with our loved ones. Memories forever bond us to one another. Hearing a particular song, sniffing a familiar scent, or observing certain signs from nature often remind us of dearly departed ones. Through memories we may feel a continued sense of communication with those who are no longer with us. These ties we have with loved ones who have passed can be powerful. In some cases they are so strong that survivors relate feeling their presence during critical times in their lives.

In a more deliberate way, we can choose to remain in touch with those we have lost through writings they left behind. Before his passing my dad began writing his memoirs. As I read these stories he wrote about his life when he was a young man, I get a glimpse into past events that shaped him to become the person I knew. His writing style, the words he used to convey his thoughts and the emotions he brought forth through his descriptions, all keep his memory close to me.

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