When thinking about my Grandma Street, what I remember is how much I loved her. When I think a little deeper, I realize that I did not even know her likes or dislikes, her favorite color, or any number of things about her.
But, what I do know about Grandma goes far beyond being aware of her favorite foods, etc…….I know that Grandma loved me too. Knowing this fact has made me stop and think about HOW I know (since I don’t remember her ever telling me).
I realize that I FELT Grandma’s love. These “impressions” came from the way she interacted with me. She was always kind, always pleased when all 5 of us kids visited her. Grandma demonstrated acceptance, not for what I might someday do or be, but for what I was right then (a shy, chubby little girl).
Time has erased a lot of my memories about specific events, but time has not erased my “impression” of being loved and accepted. Grandma left this earth several years ago, but she left behind a gift, a lasting impression of love and acceptance that will stay with me forever.
It is interesting when you think that we all make impressions every day. Sometimes these impressions are made without saying a word! This can be comforting when you think of the times we all want to say something helpful to someone but do not know what to say (such as, during a time of personal loss). But, it can also be quite uncomforting (depending upon our actions)! Because, whatever our true intent, over time it will come through.
I have always known that the words we speak are important, but had not given much thought to nonverbal communication (until thinking about Grandma). I have no doubt, that however she felt about me…….I would have known (even as a little girl). Subconsciously maybe, but I still would have known.
Like Grandma, I also have the ability (we all do) to leave an “impression” that will make a positive difference in another person’s life and last forever. AND, I can leave this “impression” without saying a word.