If a goal of the iPad is to connect people and media, that is what now happens between my dad and me. His iPad has added unexpected and pleasurable reading to my day as he sends, via e-mail, memories, reminiscences, and musings. This virtual interaction, so different from the other ways we connect with each other, is exciting as Dad passes along family history. The iPad makes it so easy.
In the past Dad, a journal writer for more than 65 years, would go to his computer, wake it up, log in, go to e-mail, log-in, write an e-mail and send it. However, if he wrote a short essay and wanted to send it to me or to a friend, he had added steps of attaching or cutting and pasting his writing into the body of an e-mail message. With so many steps Dad did not always remember one thing or another — not because of memory issues, but rather because Dad has a busy life and does not use the computer enough to make so many steps second nature. It is akin to the way I feel when I return to my work computer after a long vacation.
Now with the iPad my dad writes on the yellow pad using the nifty keyboard, finishes or edits, and hits the little envelope (e-mail icon) with his finger. His story or essay travels – virtually — right into my mailbox, or sometimes into the mailbox of another relative or friend. Dad also e-mails them to my mother who files them. The technology is doing what it is supposed to do — enabling dad to write easily and as often as he likes with no fuss or bother.
So far I’ve learned:
- how my grandfather tried to repair shoes during the Depression
- about my grandmother and her piano teaching techniques
- how his family worked together with other families in their church during the Depression to be sure everyone had enough to eat
- about the musical life of my family (so that’s why so many of us play a musical instrument)
- what life was like for my dad when he played high school sports
- why he is so committed to progressive values
- what he thinks about when he prays
- where and when he played his cello over many years
… and so much more.
These daily treats arrive almost every day, though I never know exactly when. And the best bonus — so far his essays tell stories that I did not know.
If you like this post, read some of the other descriptions of our Father/Daughter iPad for Dad adventures – iPad for Dad, #1, iPad for Dad, #2, iPad for Dad, #3, iPad for Dad, #4, iPad for Dad, #5, iPad for Dad, #6, iPad for Dad, #7, iPad for Dad, #8, iPad for Dad, #9, iPad for Dad, #10, iPad for Dad, #11, iPad for Dad, #12, iPad for Dad, #13, iPad for Dad, #14, iPad for Dad, #15, iPad for Dad, #16, iPad for Dad, #17 , iPad for Dad, #18, iPad for Dad, #19, iPad for Dad, #20, iPad for Dad, #21 and iPad for Dad, # 22.
See? It’s posts like these that send me reeling into remorse over “things I could have done with Dad…” (see my comment on Carol’s blog: http://www.desperatecaregivers.com/looking-back-on-two-years-of-elder-care-part-two/comment-page-1#comment-172)
When will self-forgiveness come?
Gosh, I look around all of the time and see things I wish i had done or not done. I would not feel remorse for a minute. Each new idea will come in handy at some point in the future.