Sunday, June 24, 2012

Her Story

Okay, this is my little play on words. I want to tell you about a little history. Like the history of revolutionary times. Of my history. And of the history that Gracie experienced last week.

My family has always taken trips that involved history. We have been to the east coast and traveled many miles. We have experienced battlefields and museums. We have visited Williamsburg and interacted with people who tell the stories of colonial times. We love this mixture of learning, living and exploration. All three generations of us.

And this brings me to her story. My parents have given Gracie a trip every year for Christmas for the past three years. They have been to New York. They have been to San Francisco. This year their trip was to Boston.

Each year we have encouraged Gracie to take pictures and keep a journal. It is so wonderful to see her trips through her eyes and to focus on her thoughts that she records in her journals. She has her Daddy's photographic eye and her Mama's like to write. What is so cool is that we have been to these places, too. We see her visions and know what she is experiencing because we have been there.

What is unique about her experiences is that she has her own twist on the story. On history. She has seen the same monuments and learns the same information. She takes pictures of things that we have seen. But she has her own time with them. She has walked the same miles, but in her own shoes. She has unique experiences that will form her. She and my folks had a lot of special moments. Not the kind that you schedule.

One particular experience on this trip to Boston really touched me. Gracie and mom and dad had eaten lunch at a fabulous Italian restaurant. They all commented that the food was delicious, but there was too much of it. They asked for boxes for their leftovers. As they walked back to their hotel they passed a shelter for veterans. They decided to stop and offer the shelter their leftovers. This experience forever changed Gracie. The people at the shelter thanked them for their kindness. Gracie has always had a kind heart. I think she was surprised at how a small gesture meant so much. And it made her realize how fortunate we are. It also inspired her to do more.

This wonderful gift from her grandparents was multifaceted. It was a present of the past and of her future. All from history. Gracie's story is touched by so many. By Paul Revere. By Harvard Yard. By the stories of the Revolution. Stories that her family has helped her experience. And they have helped her continue the story of her family. Their desire to pay it forward and be kind to others. Even complete strangers. This has all made Gracie who she is and who she will be. This is her story and I'm so proud to be a part of it.

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