Having worked for the last 46+ years (with time off for law school, which is work in its own right), I sometimes find myself getting tired of working or find it more difficult to shake off a tough day. However, I have found a sure cure to those blues – my grandchildren.
I have two grandsons, one of whom is almost four and one who just turned one. Our four-year-old lives less than a mile from us, so we are able to spend at least one evening a week with him. What a joy! He is the most interesting person I know and always makes me laugh. His imagination is boundless. Some of our routines are hiding pennies in our bedroom (hidden in plain sight, and he always helps me find them), hiding from T-rexes and ghosts who only seem to invade our house when he is there or using a laundry basket as a forklift to lift me and my bed high into the sky, turning the bed into a boat, with our fan as the propeller (I like those last three, because they involve laying in bed), locking us in jail (the downstairs bathroom – which is OK with me, as long as I can take my Kindle to jail with me), playing in the sandbox where he promises he won’t destroy the sandcastle his Mom-Mom or I (Pop-Pop) build, and then promptly smashes them as soon as we built them, getting the special stick that’s his leaf blower and blowing the leaves in our back yard, or, last week, quite intentionally squirting me with the hose – twice, laughing the whole time. (I will remember that next summer, you stinker!) He never forgets anything, and he is always smiling or laughing when we’re together!
Our other grandson lives in Philadelphia, and with his parents and us all working, we don’t see him as much as we would like. However, we cherish our time with him. He is always so pleasant, and it is great fun watching him grow in his awareness of his surroundings and his loved ones. He loves playing peek-a-boo, and we are waiting for him to take his first real steps. Although he is still too young to show the obvious creativity of his cousin, that will come, and we look forward to the many adventures of his imagination. In the meantime, watching him learn about the world around him is priceless, and clearly, in his own age-appropriate way he is every bit as creative and curious as his older cousin. Needless to say, my time with him also brings me great joy.
In this complex and stressful world, I look at the two of them and try to see life through their eyes; very uncomplicated, full of new things to observe and learn, and the sheer fun of something as simple as playing peek-a-boo or treasure hunting for pennies. What a joy, and what a gift!