That’s not an exaggeration. It’s just the truth.
Of course I love Grandma Edie; I even idolize her a little bit (truthfully, a lot). What makes our relationship different is that I know her.
We’ve always been close. For the four (and a half, probably) years I was in college, we exchanged letters every single week. I have two shoe boxes full of our correspondence; they are some of my most prized possessions.
Once I got married, I started calling her almost every day. There isn’t a subject we haven’t talked about. Honestly, we’ve discussed childbirth and gardening, weddings and funerals, successes and regrets.
My grandmother is saintly. I mean that in every sense. I hope to one day be exactly like her. But through our conversations, I realized she hasn’t always been practically perfect–she wasn’t born this way! Grandma’s had more than her fair share of trials. She’s made good decisions and (gasp!) bad, but she’s always learned something and moved forward with the experience tucked under her belt.
I’ve never been good at learning from other’s mistakes. Listening to my grandma share her rare few has been enlightening. Does it guarantee that I’m not going to do stupid things in the future? No way.
But what if there was a way I could learn from her memories first hand? What if there was some incredible invention that allowed us to (forgive the Star Trek reference) mind meld? What if I could feel the emotions–the anger, the sorrow, the frustration–that led to her decisions? When faced with a similar circumstance would I do something different or would I repeat her actions with the same results?
That is the premise of my book. If you had the chance to relive someone’s life–without affecting it–would that experience stop you from making mistakes in your own?
What do you guys think?