At first, it was a series of pictures of Grandpa and Grandson enjoying themselves. Once the book Grandpa, Do It! I Do It, Too! was together with the words, it became how do you influence another individual – and it’s multigenerational when you look at it that way. Of course, then that path has a deeper meaning in terms of philosophy in terms of understanding relationships. Parents and grandparents have to be careful because here are examples of the child emulating adult behavior.
The book started out a simple story from Grandma Sue’s hand. It grew deeper and broader through her artistic endeavors. For anyone who considers themselves a teacher or a rabbi, this book truly captures that student/teacher or parent/child relationship. It certainly has given me an awareness of the influence I have had on the people around me that I never realized I had before. The book brings that all into focus: my relationship with parents, grandparents, brothers and sister. All these memories were dormant but right there all the same. It has done that for several other people who have shared their reactions, feelings and experiences with us.
So from a simple picture story of a magical week, it became a reflection of all those things that derive from earning and sharing love and respect. This book captured it all.
Not everybody gets it. Some see just the pictures and don’t put themselves into the picture – so they miss out on the meaning and opportunity to relive their own special moments. Every one of those pictures reminds me of antics with my brothers and sister in younger days with family members. My brothers and I built roads in the dirt, sometimes using rocks as the trucks, using knockouts as manhole covers and using electrical conduit as sewer lines. The morning cereal one reminds me of my daughter and me making breakfast together. The swimming picture reminds me again of my daughter. All brought back. All brought back into focus by Grandpa, Do It! I Do It, Too! – I didn’t even realize all those memories were there. I look at my relationships with other people and I see similar characteristics that I just didn’t realize were there.
From a family values perspective I don’t know of a better example. Age doesn’t matter. It’s two people having fun in a very classic sense. It’s learning from one another – a two-way communication – like the cereal picture, I thought about picking him up and holding him while I prepared the cereal but I knew he’d get too heavy to hold long. So I got the stool. That facilitated him doing his own cereal preparation.
It’s more than “just pictures” of a grandpa and grandson that were captured. It’s a trip down memory lane for most of us – young or old.