This week I had her all to myself, as my wife was out of town. My energy level waxes and wanes unpredictably due to my drug treatments for cancer. So, I’d arranged it with our son and daughter-in-law to take Savvy first thing in the morning, when I would be fresh. They would pick her up after she napped.
She arrived at 7:30. Off came the coat and her shoes and socks. Following a dish of eggs and toast, we set to coloring, reading, wrestling, playing marimbas, stacking and sorting blocks and cups, emptying the pots and pans from the cupboards, and etc.
The morning wore on and we left the house with the stroller to explore the neighborhood. Back on went the shoes and socks and her puffy coat. She proudly pulled its hood up and over her ears.
Outside, the morning was cool and overcast. She insisted upon walking. I pushed the stroller alongside, herding her clear of the street. We went to a nearby playground, four blocks away. She never faltered. She walked the entire way with her hands tucked into her coat pockets, singing songs, and babbling contentedly.
Back home, a diaper change, a snack, and a cup of water, then some quiet time together looking at photos on the iPad. Soon, she was yawning and I laid her down for a nap. She slept for over two hours.
Her mom arrived shortly thereafter, and they left for other adventures.
Often, days with Savvy go much like it did this past Friday. Together, we create bonds that strengthen the shelter of her family, which will guide her throughout the years ahead. And, that works for both of us, for there is no more sacred a trust than that of raising a child.
At my age, and given the tenuous state of my health, keeping the company of someone alert to the world’s simple wonders is a tremendous gift. Life is short and peace of mind fleeting. Yet, seeing things through the eyes of a child refreshes my appreciation for living. Such are the blessings of grand-parenting.