Gift Idea for Aging Parents: The Old Neighborhood Reunion


By Joy Loverde

Picture234If you are a regular reader of my blogs then you may have read about the time when my sister and I took our Mom back to Italy to visit the town where she was born (Marlia). That was a trip of a lifetime!  In case you missed it, here is the blog:

Last month, my sister and I stepped it up a notch and we did something similar back in the States. We took Mom back to her old neighborhood where she was a young wife and mother, raising five children (me and my siblings).  We arranged a lunch for Mom and her friends as well as our childhood friends. Together again after 40 years!

Back in the 50s and 60’s in Mom’s old neighborhood there were ten couples (20 adults) and 22 children.  We lived on one long street in a suburb of Chicago called Melrose Park. On a typical day, adults and children were in and out of each other’s homes. Doors were never lock during the day. We children went to school together. Parents partied together. We had birthday parties. We played baseball in the street all summer long. Our parents never worried about us. We never strayed far. The old neighborhood was one big family sharing the ups and downs of life.

xxxArranging the lunch took one year; but the day finally arrived. We met at a local restaurant in the old neighborhood.  Two adults (Mom and Sue) and seven children gathered together to share memories good and bad. At this writing only three adults are living -- Mom, Sue, and Loretta (who could not join us for the lunch). Many of us brought photographs of times gone by. We toasted those who are no longer with us. It was a bittersweet experience.

I wish I had thought of this idea sooner and I sincerely hope you take the time to make this happen for your parents.

Until next time.