It is a quiet grey afternoon. There is a light rain and cool air drifting in the windows. “Little Man” has finally fallen asleep in this late afternoon rain. He was tired at one and could hardly keep his eyes open. By two p.m. he was manic – crawling from place to place, crying, laughing and bouncing. He wanted up but once up needed down. We had tried all the old tricks including the stroller ride (that was until it started raining and he thought that was great fun).
Now we, Grandparents, sit enjoying the quiet of the rain. We each have our computers out – reading or writing. A sense of peace at least for now. He has finally decided to nap.
We are doing weekly care for our grandson as his parents work – five days a week – all day. We can do this! I have taught forever – how much work can one grandchild be.
Well, it is surprising how much work he can be. Yes, I taught for 40 years and yes I raised two kids but old age has arrived even when we think it has not. Little Man has found all our weak spots. The back that hurts after lifting him up and down and around. The knees that use to be so flexible tend to creak a bit more when getting up from the floor for the umpteenth time. After running around all morning, handling the heat of the day, getting lunch ready, feeding and clean up and then no nap in site it leaves us realizing we are not as young as we use to be.
Would I give up this time? No way – to see him begin to develop language, to see the first few crawls and to sit with stories and stories to read. I will deal with the aches and pains of old age in helping raise a little one. It won’t be long before he is off to be with other children so for now I will find the Tylenol if I need it, do yoga and lift my hand weights so I can hopefully keep up with him over the next few years.
Ah, the life of a grandparent!
(It is all pretty special since I am aware of so many grandparents whose grandchildren are so far away and Zoom is their only way to connect right now. I feel blessed.)