Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Buying Time- Something Grandmas Do

I did something yesterday evening that reminded me of my late Grandma Shoemake. At the end of the day my daughter-in-law texted me about me picking up something I had loaned her before it got lost in her vast array of moving boxes. I asked if I could come that evening to pick it up. We got carried away in conversation, and somehow ended up on the subject of how much my sixteen-month-old grandson loves ice cream. I decided to pick up four cups from Chic-Fil-A on my way.

As I gathered the container of ice cream and walked to their door I was reminded of how almost every summer day my Grandma would show up at our house with a watermelon in her arms for us to gather around the picnic table in the backyard and eat. As a little kid I wondered why this was so important to her, and I, like Felix preferred ice cream.

Looking back on it now I see those watermelons as a peace offering of sorts- a physical gift that bought her a precious commodity, our time. Yesterday I bought ice cream for that same reason.

For a grandparent, even a busy grandparent, there is a realization that time slips past you faster than you ever thought possible. You see,
in my mind I am just as much that six-year-old girl who complained and said, “Watermelon again?” as I am the Mimi delighting over watching a baby learn to feed himself ice cream. My soon to be thirty-year-old son sitting on the couch watching the spoon hit the baby’s mouth upside down serves as an urgent reminder that time spins by too fast, and every moment is meant to be treasured.

My thinking about myself as the grandma- not the parent or the child also reminded me of how time spent with grandchildren depends on so many things. There are distance factors, other obligation factors, and procrastination factors that all work against getting to really know these special little people. Before long the little people turn into teens with worlds and obligations of their own that take them away.

I wish as a young adult with all my stretched too thin scheduling that I had spent more time with my aging grandmothers. There is something special about the way a grandparent sees you- how they think the world of you- make you feel special. I’d love to have one more conversation with each of mine.

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