I got a call from my mom earlier this week, which isn't unusual, and usually doesn't have anything to do with speedy typing. But this time it did. She told me my Uncle had brought around a stack of my Grandma's old journals to her house. Every one of her children received a stack of journals, but my parents got the biggest stack presumably because they have the biggest family. Eight journals, to be precise. My Uncle asked if we, as a family, could find a way to digitizing these journals so everyone could enjoy them.
Guess who got that job?
Evidently, my grandma was a prodigious journal-writer. She wrote every day. Most days, she wrote the date, then under that wrote, "Prayer. Exercise. Scriptures." I have wondered every time I've typed these words out, why she felt the need to document that every day. Was it just so her posterity would know what things she found important? Was it (as I believe, but my husband disputes) that she was the type of person that needed some sort of accountability for things she did, and since she lived alone this was the best way to account for that time? Was it because she'd been told by the leaders of the church to write a journal and did so, even though she really didn't know what to write?
I don't know.
After only a couple of hours working on this, there are several things I've learned about my Grandma, but I haven't discovered her motivation.
I have learned that she was meticulous about taking care of people. That she enjoyed riding in the car to her temple assignments with her friends, but hated being kept waiting by those same friends. At 81 years of age, she kept a careful accounting of all her income and spendings, and walked regularly to the bank. She wrote of having physical ailments, but never complained about them.
Now, I've only transcribed one month of her journal, and I'm beginning to feel the weight of the task I've undertaken. This is going to take a while. But I'm hoping that some of Grandma's spunk and generosity will rub off if I stare at her handwriting long enough.