Being lonely and being forgotten are different

I shared this picture on our program Facebook page about a year ago and it went viral. There is a reason for that. Many people can relate to its message, especially during the holidays. But the most important lesson in this picture is the fact that it points out a clear distinction between being lonely and being forgotten.

When we first started this program, we were called Bring Smiles to Forgotten Seniors. One of the reasons that I started the program was because I saw so many seniors in communities that no longer had the benefit of family or friend visits, cards showing up in their mail, flowers being delivered to their community or even just a hug from a loved one. As a society we spend an enormous amount of money on the young and the thriving middle age population. Yet, when it comes to our elderly the resources to take care of them are far and few between, even though we all wind up there some day.

Seniors are one of our most precious resources. They hold our history in their thoughts and minds. They trail blazed causes and rights that we may have never had. They provided and cared for us in our early years and beyond. They sacrificed so we could have and often went without so that we would not have to. They earned the right to not be forgotten and for us to ensure that they are never lonely.

I mentioned that there is a clear distinction between being forgotten and being lonely. While being lonely is certainly a side effect of being forgotten, we all get lonely. Someone may be away and we miss them. We find ourselves sick and having to stay in when all our friends are out together. Everyone is busy and we have to find something to do by ourselves. We recently lost a loved one and find ourselves alone. Many things that can make any of us lonely at any given time. They are natural occurrences in life. What is unnatural however is the loneliness caused by being forgotten.

Being forgotten implies that we are no longer wanted. The opportunity for someone to be able to cure our loneliness is there, it is just that no one is taking the action to do it. It is as if at some point in life we become so self absorbed that those that made our own lives possible no longer matter. Parents and grandparents who took care of us are no longer an integral part of what we do. It takes too much effort to visit, to call, to care for, to love. Whether it was by some unfortunate occurrence or just a lack of caring, the seniors in our lives are simply forgotten and that is a sad thing.

I love my family. I was by my grandmother’s side until she passed away. I visit my mom and dad and have them visit me. I remember elderly people that I have been in contact with for years through cards and other means. Now, through this program, we will make sure that seniors all over the country will be reminded that someone cares, that they are not alone and they are certainly not forgotten. If you have someone in your life that you have lost touch with, reinstate that contact. Let them know they are loved and cared about. Fill that hole in their heart and at the same time inject a little life in yours.

Have a great day and remember to be the reason someone…especially a loved one…smiles today.


#rememberingseniors #connectingthecircleoflife #bringsmilestoseniors #sharinglove #inspirationalposts

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