In 100 Years, They’ll Want to Know Your Story

The end of summer was like no other (I’m not sure when it began!) and the start of the school year has been too. Some kids are back in-person some of the days, all of the days, or none of the days. As my friend Nancy – who got notified after only four days of in-person school that a teacher in her child’s Long Island middle school tested positive - said, “Nobody’s winning here.”

And yet – whether you have a grandchild, a niece, or your own kids at home, it’s been amazing to see all the ways that schools have adapted. On the first day of my 8th grader’s PE class this year, I found him running frantically around the house. When I asked, “What are you doing?” He yelled out, “A scavenger hunt!” And then did several lunges into my office for their next activity. Brilliant!

I’ve had my own educational experience trying to figure out how to film things safely in this new environment. One project I shot this summer filmed families on their front porches, sharing how innovative their private school Landon was at the outset of the pandemic. We filmed entirely outside and tried to avoid direct sunlight, thunderstorms and the neighbor’s lawnmower.

Though this was a promo piece for the school, what I find interesting about this project was it centered on the families’ stories and captured a unique moment in history – a time like no other.

I often talk about the importance of capturing your history and passing on your legacy – and I’m usually talking about older adults.

But the stories happening right now during this pandemic are important to preserve no matter how you old you are.

Years from now, people will want to know the perspectives of children, teenagers, young couples and older adults – how they coped and what things they had to do differently.

We have a family “gathering” this weekend for the Jewish holidays and yes, it’s on Zoom. And while it might not be the traditional way I would capture a story, I think I might just press record so we have that moment captured in time.

Or who knows - maybe we’ll start writing letters to each other – similar to these that were discovered from the 1918 pandemic.

Have you found unique ways to capture your family's pandemic story? I’d love to hear what you’ve been doing. Or – if you’d like help capturing those stories, whether in person or on Zoom – please reach out.