After the discussion, we were given time in class to work on our Healthy Aging Projects and have them reviewed by Professor Bussell. For my HAP, I am partnering with Jackie to create a blog that documents the Oral History Projects that the LCS cohorts complete every year. My Oral History Project focused on my maternal grandmother and this was the first OHP to be posted onto the blog. Jackie and I used this project as the model for the formatting of the blog. In addition, we collaborated with Dr. Patricia Benesh, who wrote the book “7 Memories: Partnering to Write a Memoir,” and mentored the cohort during the early stages of conducting the OHPs, on the project, seeking her feedback.
Through creating this blog, Jackie and I hope to preserve the stories of older people and highlight their extraordinary memories and experiences to the world. Trish designed the OHPs in order to preserve the memories of an aging family member for future generations to learn from and enjoy. Jackie and I felt that highlighting these stories publicly would help to further debunk stereotypes of older adults, their experiences, and the years of wisdom that they possess. The process has been very meaningful, as it has helped me to better understand my own family history, especially how my grandmother came to be the person she is today and what events were defining in her life.
People often doubt the value of their own experiences. Sometimes all it takes is for someone else to recognize that value so that others can learn from it. It is my hope that through this HAP, readers will be inspired by the testimonies of older adults and carry the wisdom and lessons from these stories with them throughout their own lives.