Fifteen days with our freckle faced, elementary aged granddaughter has left this middle-aged grandma exhausted, happy, and incredibly grateful for the privilege of housing her for an extended visit …. as well as relieved to ship her back to her parents.
Let’s just say I’m not used to pulling back to back fifteen hour shifts … for two weeks straight.
It was worth it, though, because she is worth every minute of my time and energy.
Speaking of energy – she makes the energizer bunny look medicated. How I wish I owned stock in Monster, 5 hour energy and every caffeinated drink ever created.
My empathy and respect for stay at home, homeschooling and single mothers skyrockets after every extended visit with her. There is no way I could handle this parenting task without the self-control of Holy Spirit, the wisdom of younger moms and my husband’s support. I intended to joke that I returned her alive and without scars, marks or bruises … until I read an online article today about a Florida grandmother arrested for homicide of her grandson because she was “fed up.” My joking thoughts fell flat in light of the stark reality of life without the fruit of the Spirit.
There were funny moments, sweet times of night-time cuddles, laughter in the dark and whispered prayers. We sung Christian songs at the top of our lungs while putting together a jigsaw puzzle day after day, had treasure hunts, baked a birthday cake and blew up so many balloons that I don’t want to see another one for weeks!
The balloons tormented the cat into hiding for days in the sweet little hidey hole she created by placing a pillow into the nightstand. Only a kid would think that way. It taught me to think outside the box.
We spotted birds together, snorkeled in our swimming pool, and splashed about playing imaginary games. We attended a family funeral, had serious but short talks about God, heaven, and death. Every time she is around, hubby and I are immersed in the language and culture of elementary school once again. I found myself saying, “Ewww and yay!” more than I thought possible.
The moments she tested boundaries and her constant need for attention were at times, draining. I thrive on my alone time, so this was my particular challenge. I couldn’t help but laugh out loud in exasperation one day as a slip of paper appeared under the locked bathroom door reading, “Are you ok?”
Yes, my precious freckle face, I’m okay.
You are the brown-eyed, brown-haired daughter I longed for as a younger woman. God in His infinite and loving wisdom chose to bring you into my life twenty years later than I desired. I’ve come to realize you are a restoration of what was lost. No loss for a believer is permanent, when Jesus takes up your cause. You just have to be able to recognize the form that restoration may take. It may surprise and delight you.