Everyone has experienced a moment that pulled at their heart strings and exposed emotions raw and so close they overflowed, usually with tears. It might have been a departure for a trip, a loved one leaving for military service and the great unknown expanse of time before seeing them again. Think back to WWII. How many of our elders boarded trains to go to war? How many had reunions at such a train station, finally home. Our WWII Veteran’s have incredible stories to tell if you will just ask, before it’s too late. Collect those family stories to preserve for future generations. Be sure to record the details, notes, video, audio, photographs. Don’t stop their story once it starts, just let the memories flow, like an engine picking up speed. When the words slow to stop then ask questions, get last names, place names, people who were there – you may have another families story there too! What were the sounds and smells at the scene of the story? What emotions were close at hand, fear, elation, pride, homesickness?
Summer camp, do you remember that moment when your parents drove away and left you there the first time. Your heart was caught somewhere between excited and sheer panic. 2 weeks, that is an eternity in a child’s lifetime. Remember those days when summer seemed to be forever? What would camp be like? You didn’t know anyone, how would you survive/ What was out there in the woods beyond the tent or cabin? Heart strings sure got pulled at summer camp, and many a parent drove away dabbing tears of separation sadness. Two sides to every story. When you get a chance jot down your memories and then ask your parent to do the same, I wonder if the stories will match? Whose memory pulls hardest on the heart strings now?
Meeting your child or grandchild for the first time, might be the number one thing that pulls at heart strings. That very first time their hand is in yours, they have you. Forever those strings will be there to be pulled over and over again as they grow through their milestone moments. Remember how you felt? Stop take a minute and write it down. I know when my first grandchild was born there was such elation at meeting her and such heartbreak the first time I drove away, living many states apart meant I would miss the day to day changes a tiny infant makes. I know those children will always have direct access to my heart strings!
Want to have that heart string pulled good and hard, witness the birth of an animal. Then you can watch their attempts at first steps. That will do it for sure. Here a Dutch Belted cow “Linda” encourages her daughter Beth to stand for the first time. The cow belonged to my son, his 4-H project. He was very interested in rare breeds such as the Dutch Belted dairy cow. Linda’s due date happened to coincide with a short vacation and he was worried he was not home. She was in good hands, I wasn’t worried, until I saw how it was wearing on him. As we drove home he wished for a heifer ( a girl) and wished she would be red, the more rare color in the breed. I laughed and said the odds of a heifer are 50/50, not bad but a red one, I couldn’t calculate the odds. Linda waited until we were home, I am sure she waited for my son. Then as if by magic she lay down and made wishes come true! That day I could really feel the tug on the heart strings watching this birth. Be sure to keep these family stories to share someday. I am glad I wrote this one here today, that son is now all grown up. I will ask him for his memories from that day and save those too.
The fifth and final item to pull on your heart strings today and create a family story…
…finding a picture of a favorite pet that has gone on to greener pastures. Hagrid the sheep was as kind a soul as you would ever find. He played a key figure in several years annual Christmas Pageants. He didn’t mind going to church and standing up front eating hay on Christmas Eve. His best friend always went with him. The little goat Ivy and her big wooly friend, those memories will always tug at my heart strings.
What tugs at yours? Leave a comment of how your heart strings go pulled.
Check out another log of mine on family stories.