And What About Grandma

9 10 2009


Time have changed so many things, one of them I believe is the way we see our grandmas. I remembered when visiting or receiving grandma at our home it was always a joyous occasion. I loved the way she listened to me and the special little things she would sometimes bring me, most of them were little and very inexpensive but just to know she thought of me was enough.

Life has become a place where you live where you can survive and not where you want to be. Families used to live closed to each other throughout their life and in that process they saw each other grow up and helped one another when needed. I won’t paint a rosie picture of the whole experience because sometimes there were moments you wished they were far away but grandmas somehow made things alright.

It breaks my heart to hear of grandmas being placed in nursing homes and then forgotten by their families. I realize that life moves so rapidly that before you know it your day is all gone; between work, house work, the kids, your spouse and all the activities you are lucky to have time for yourself. The days go by and grandma waits lonely in a cold room far away from all she holds dear, thinking that today maybe is the day she gets that visit, that call and nights fall down. Another day without you. She wonders why, how and for how long she will have to endure the pain and sorrow in her heart. Better days come to mind as her tears roll down her cheeks and wonder… If the grandma happens to be Hispanic and her kids moved to the United States now she has another barrier that keeps her faraway from her family, the language. It is so sad to see parents who replace their native language for the one they are living around now and don’t take the time and effort to teach their language to their kids. When grandma comes they can’t even talk anymore and they long to get to know them.

I thank God I lived in a generation that had the blessing to enjoy grandmas and that I had the chance to be with them a lot, I knew them and they knew me. They taught me their favorite dishes and made me my favorite food. I called them when I was far away and told them how much I missed and loved them. I also wrote letters to them. I played, I cried, I laughed and I grew to be who I am because of them. I learned by their mistakes and by their advice, and I was in awe when I heard all they went through. There is not a moment I did not want to be with them, even on their death bed and I will forever love and carry them in my heart.

So what about your grandma? Your kids’ grandma? Have you taken the time to talk or visit them today? Do you know she is waiting for you and no matter how long it has been she will still love you just the same as if you were there yesterday, even though you were not?

Michael Jackson’s Lesson for You

30 06 2009

Today I want to share a very powerful e-mail I received, it made me think about my legacy and I hope it helps you too. Please tell me what you think of it.


Where were you last week when you got the news about
Michael Jackson’s passing?


I was listening to the radio while driving through
rural Pennsylvania on Route 22 to Shartlesville.

I was on my way to a friend’s farm for a relaxing
three-day weekend with Laura and the kids.

It’s strange, isn’t it, that we never forget where
we were when we first heard shocking news. People
will often ask “Where were you when JFK was shot?” Or “Where
were you when the planes hit?”

Death has a way of slapping us across the face and
waking us up in a way we never forget.

When you hear the name “Michael Jackson,” you probably
have two different thoughts: “Incredible performer”
and “Very strange person.”

For better or worse, that is the legacy he left.

Personally, I tend to dwell more on the legacy of
memorable songs, videos, and dance numbers that he
left behind. Those are the things I continue to enjoy.

I really wish I’d had the chance to see him perform
live when he was at his peak.

How about you? What kind of legacy are you leaving?

Lately, I’ve been asking myself that question more and

I was thinking about all the things I’ve failed to do
as a father. But then on Father’s Day, my 16-year-old
son gave me a truly priceless gift: a three-page letter
expressing his love and gratitude for me.

Things I thought I’d failed to teach him he’d somehow
learned by observation.

But I still have a big list of unfinished business
personally and professionally that I’m starting to
tend to.

The Jackson story reminds me that the legacy we leave
is a combination of both what we do and how we live our

Everybody’s talking about Jackson, Farrah, Ed McMahon
and Billy Mays.

But very few people are thinking seriously about the
legacy they will leave.

And even fewer are writing down goals and taking
deliberate actions to achieve that end.

As a musician, Michael Jackson was surprisingly
deliberate and proactive.

I learned the other day that while he was a member of
the Jackson 5 he told several close friends that he
wanted to break out on his own and become the biggest
entertainer of all time.

Some will call that ego. But I prefer to think of it
as simply an honest assessment of the gifts he’d been
given and a compelling vision for his life and what he
might be able to do with those gifts.

So he decided to anger his brothers and leave the
Jackson 5. He began working with Quincy Jones. And of
course the result was “Thriller,” the biggest-selling
album of all time!

As a singer, dancer, and songwriter, Jackson gave us
all an incredible gift worthy of the endless replays
that have been taking place on television and radio.

But here’s my question: What if he had never decided
to pursue his dream? What if he had never left the
Jackson 5?

What if he had listened to his family, friends, and
even all the well-intentioned logical voices that said,
“Don’t be so risky. Don’t be so selfish. Who are you
to think you can be phenomenally successful on your

What kind of legacy would he have left then?

We’d probably barely remember him.

More importantly, what kind of legacy will you leave if
you don’t take action to make your dreams come true?

As we hear about Farrah, Ed McMahon, Billy Mays, and
even those closer to us who have passed away recently,
we’re reminded that life is short.

Oliver Wendall Holmes said, “Most people go to their
graves with their music still inside them.”

What is the thing you know deep down you should do, but
you’ve been too busy, lazy or scared to do?

Whatever it is, get started today.

It might be writing a new book, taking a trip, or doing
some kind of community service. It might be mentoring
someone, launching a new business, or healing a broken

Whatever it is, get started today.

It’s painfully obvious that tomorrow may be too late.

All the Best,

Steve Harrison
Radio-TV Interview Report (RTIR)
& Million Dollar Author Club
Bradley Communications Corp.
390 Reed Road, First Floor
PO Box 360
Broomall PA 19008
484-477-4235 (Cust Svc Voice Mail)