Yesterday, my daughter went to a wedding, and asked me to watch my little grandson. I usually have my youngest daughter with me or I’ll have the opportunity to watch him with his grandfather. Both of those experiences are cherished by me. I love grandparenting this little boy with my first ex-husband, who is also a very, very dear friend to me. And I love letting my youngest play with her little nephew, who adores her.
But his grandfather was invited to the wedding too. Last night was a one-on-one time, just my little grandson and me. It was wonderful.
First, I took him to a toy store to get him a bucket of Play Dough and appropriate cool tools for mashing, squeezing, and other assorted things to do. I, also, picked up a wooden pounding tool kit, with little hammer and pegs to hammer in. His grandfather gets him noisy electric toys. I favor the good old fashion wooden organic type toys. Either way, it is part of the grandparent charter to get your grandchildren toys that are capable of emitting the loudest noise possible. Of course, all items are to be kept at the parents’ home.
Then we went to the mall and had a pizza, making somewhat of a spectacle of ourselves in the food court. I didn’t care. I only had eyes for him, and we had such fun being silly with each other.
Then we went back to his house, and for a good hour, I rolled an assembly line of multi colored balls of various sizes, while he squeezed them, pounded them with a hammer and explored all the wonderful things you can do with the gooey, pliable stuff.
Then we made popcorn, and settled down to watch “Cars”. After a while, he leaned up against me and snuggling in my arms, fell asleep.
I was in heaven. For that moment, there were no causes, no deadlines, no concerns of whether I could make my bills or what I was going to do with my life. In that moment, it was just him and me.
I wish I could have slowed down more often when I was younger. But I know it’s easier now for me to do these things, not only because I’ve grown older and wiser and recognize and value the truly important things in life better, (although I’m sure it’s part of that) but because for the first time in my life I am no longer drawn into or involved in one drama or another. Because I have grown to recognize the importance of protecting my privacy, my peace. I’m not so anxious or willing to give that up to meet the needs or expectations of another. And I’ve done enough healing within me to no longer be attracted to those situations that are guaranteed to…well, suck the life out of me.
Whether through blood or people who just bleed you with mind games, lies, betrayal, invalidation, verbal, emotional or physical abuse, there are people who it is best advised to not stand in a crowd with, never mind alone.
They deprive you of those one-on-one times with the ones who love you best, who need you most.
I’m grateful for second chances. Need to forgive myself for lost first chances, and resolve to love and to protect my peace of mind, as an expression of that love, to the best of my ability for the rest of my life. My little grandson deserve that, and so do my children.
And so do I.