Posted tagged ‘being a grandfather’

The Morning After…Watching The Grandkids

August 2, 2016

WORDS FROM W.W.                                                          August 2, 2016

                              

It’s the morning after supervising the three grandchildren for ten hours. I’m feeling the effects!

First of all, there’s my speech pattern! I’m talking in one and two word phrases, and repeating them two or three times. For instance, I stood in front of the refrigerator this morning looking at the containers of orange and apple juice and saying to myself “Juice! Juice! Juice!” I said it non-audibly to my inner self, but I said it with the voice of my sixteen month old granddaughter.

The morning proceeded.

“Waffle! Waffle! Waffle!”

“Keys! Keys! Keys!”

“Coffee! Coffee! Coffee!”

I’m afraid I’ll carry this toddler stream of repetitive verbiage too far. How will Carol react when she comes home from an errand and I greet her with “Hi Wife! Hi Wife!”? Or what if I discover the Half-and-Half container at Starbucks is empty and I carry the container to the counter shouting “Cream! Cream! Cream!”? I may never be able to go back to that Starbucks where I’ve been seen as a responsible adult for the last several years.

Really! Really! Really!

I’m looking at Pike’s Peak right now and saying to myself “Big! Big! Big!” This afternoon when I lay down for a nap I just hope I don’t whine “Pac-i!” Pac-i! Pac-i!”, as in “pacifier!”

The second after effect is my body whining to me. My lower back is reminding me that I’m not a young man anymore. Every time the grand baby looked up at me and said “Up! Up! Up!”, I obliged. Is there rehab therapy for grandparents? My arm muscles feel like I’ve done a full weight training workout at the Y.M.C.A. Actually, it has just been a day of squat thrusts and arm curls with a twenty-two pound weight! I thought I would sleep soundly last night out of exhaustion, but instead I tossed and turned in pain. I’m hoping I have the strength to fix lunch!, lunch!, lunch! I’m now speaking to myself again and thinking of my massage therapist, Jackie Landers. “Massage! Massage! Massage!”

Finally, the third after effect is a different kind of feeling whatsoever. It’s a feeling…a realization of blessedness! In the midst of one word demands and tried muscles I know without a doubt that I am a blessed man, a graced granddad! As I wrote in a blog post a few days ago, I am in marvel of the little ones! They make me feel young at heart even as I feel the age of  my body. I actually get a little emotional thinking about them.

Today is our five year old granddaughter Reagan’s first day of kindergarten. Jesse, our eight year old grandson starts third grade. They amaze me even as they cause me to need a nap. They have amazing parents who keep them grounded in the Word, on-course with figuring out what is appropriate and what isn’t, and immersed in unconditional love.

So even as my speech pattern has changed today and my body has gone south I wouldn’t change anything. To my heavenly Father I say the two words that the toddler does not repeat, but rather only says once as I hand her the sip cup full of juice.

“Thank you!”

 

The Marvel of Little Ones

July 30, 2016

WORDS FROM W.W.                                                         July 30, 2016

                                     

I am a grandfather…three times over! An 8 year old professor in the making, a five year old CEO, and a 16 month old politician. The past two days “Grammy”, our dear Michigan friend Janet, and I have been watching the Three Miniature Musketeers since our fourth grade teaching daughter “Mom” went back to begin the new school year. Since my grandson often dresses up as Superman, Ironman, Batman, or Captain America I guess it would be more appropriate to refer to the three as “The Avengers!”

The two older kids entertain one another most of the time. We just have to be the Supreme Court Justices for decisions that can’t be resolved through sibling negotiations.

But the 16 month old! She is the Energizer Bunny with a diaper on!

And I marvel at her! I am amazed at just about everything she does, including the amount of poop that can fill her diaper! How can so much come out of someone so small?

I am amazed at how she can go from laughter to having a tantrum in the space of a few seconds…and then back again!

I am amazed at how she greets me with her pronunciation of “Granddad” every time I arrive in the room after being gone for…Ohhh!…maybe two minutes.

She amazes me with her determination, carrying around the handbag her mom has passed down to her. The handbag is about half her size, and she is determined to lift it and place it on the couch that comes up to her chest. Grunting all the way, she stays on task until it is heaved on to the couch…and then she promptly takes it back down, walks around for a few seconds, and then repeats the whole task again.

I am amazed at how relational she is. She is drawn to where the person or persons are, and when she is in the room she garners all the attention.

I am amazed at her capacity for mimicking. Grammy said the word “pizza” while she was in the room- not to her, mind you!- and she voiced her agreement with the word by shouting “PIZZA!” When her brother and sister dance in the middle of the living room, she dances. When her brother sits and reads she is prone to sit and “kind-a read”, also.

She stuns me with her understanding of boundaries. She stands in front of the DVD player and video game system and says to no one in particular “No no!” as she shakes her head.

I’m taken back by her impatience. She sits in my lap as I read a book to her, but if the pages aren’t turning fast enough she turns them for me…and even takes the book and throws it down! That’s my clue that we are done with that one! “Move on, Granddad!”

I am amused at how I can be her personal playground, as in climbing tree! Slap a sign on me that says “Jungle Gym!”

And what occurred to me in the midst of my two days of amazement was the fact that our Father God is just as amazed at everything each one of us does! God is still amazed at what a 62 year old grandfather does…good and bad! He is amused by our humor, and amazed by our words of wisdom. He’s taken back by our ability to figure out situations, make mistakes and learn from them. His heart is warmed by the depth of our relationships, and the care we offer to one another. He’s taken back by the amount of crap that is a part of our lives!

In many ways my amazement about everything our 16 month old granddaughter does is a reflection of how our Creator sees each one of us. He closely watches because he deeply loves!

Finding The Slide, Losing The Back

May 22, 2016

WORDS FROM W.W.                                                        May 22, 2016

                               

Our fourteen month old granddaughter, Corin, is in the midst of that exciting and exhausting stage of discovery where she wants to try or touch everything…but not for very long. Right now her attention span is about as long as a squirrel’s. Sitting still is not in her daily agenda. Sitting still is for old people!

So I made the mistake of helping her discover the play slide in her backyard last night.        Here’s the procedure: Pick Corin up, lean with her forward and place on slide, continue to lean forward as she grabs and my hands with her hands, watch her slide while still in bent position making sure she is safe at bottom.

Repeat!

Repeat!

Repeat!

Repeat!

I was the “ski lift” taking the barefoot skier back to the top. Every time she reached the bottom she pointed back to the top. Obviously, she had heard of the all-day ski pass; one price covers all…or, in this case, one granddad lifts each time.

But this granddad does not have a mechanical back, but rather a sixty-two year old rickety body part that I would compare to the wooden roller coaster at Camden Park in Huntington, West Virginia. It’s still standing, but I wouldn’t trust it.

Let me tell you! A fourteen month old who is being lifted, seated, and supported in sliding down a four foot slide wants to do it forever! She knows…probably…that stopping will mean that Grammy will grab a tissue and wipe her nose, and she hates for her nose to be wiped. She knows that Granddad will keep doing what he is doing until there is a system malfunction. She’s a smart cookie who knows that her granddad isn’t smart enough to say “Enough!”

So this morning “LB” (lower back) is grumbling to me about having to work overtime. “LB” is going to be moaning and groaning, like a teenager asked to do work around the house, all day about how much I love Corin more than him…and he’s right!

Deal with it, LB! Deal with it!