When I left work this evening the excitement hit me! I am going to Oregon tomorrow to see my grandchildren. Grandchildren! I can't believe I am typing this word or that I am truly a grandmother.
As I raised my own three children on my own I remember thinking that I never knew as a single person how large my heart could grow. Could one heart possibly hold that much love for another human being and then times it time three? As I held each new life in my arms I was overwhelmed with the reality that these amazing beautiful creatures were a gift of life on loan to me for only a short time.
I really never thought about becoming a grandmother. Never really looked that far ahead in my life as I was busy with the three children I was raising at the same time I returned to college and graduate school. Life was a never ending perpetual motion forward from the present day to the next.
Then before I knew it being a mom in the literal sense was over. They babies were fling the coop and I could only hope that the icing on the cake would be a continuation of our relationship on an adult level. Then too my utter surprise......the first grandchild came, then the heart grandchildren were introduced into my life.....four total and then two more grandchildren came into the world bringing the total to 7!
Beyond my wildest dreams I was there at the beginning of my grand children's lives. Holding each one shortly after birth and then bang, bang, bang, there it was again! My heart expanded three to the third power....no to the ninth power....oh never mind let me try this again. When I had my own children I heard someone describe it like this...it's like you suddenly find your heart has left your body and is now riding on your sleeve. The heart takes a life of its own. Moments of awareness of the greatness of these small human beings hits like a tidal wave....I could tear up just watching those angelic faces on their pillows at night sleeping in peace. I often felt humbled and wanted so much to be the best parent I could possibly be...just to deserve these incredible gifts floating through my life. How could I ever be there enough to keep them safe, to be the person who gave them the very best support of learning who or what they were or who they were evolving into as they grew into adults.
Then when the grandchildren came into my life the LOVE expanded like a Universe opening up inside me....now instead of my heart on my sleeve it was like my heart took wings and flew often in front of me....flying ahead of where I was in the moment.....the openness, the vulnerability of deepen knowing that life again had granted me the premier of living miracles. There are no words to describe. Indeed I discovered that only other grandparents knew why the silly smiles or how being in the presence of these fascinating creatures brought energy and new life into an aging body. Trying to describe being a grandparent to others is just impossible as I see the expression of friends who thought I had lost my mind as I played and adjusted my priorities. Suddenly dreams of vacations in the Caribbean were replaced with trips across the country to attend birthday parties, reading to grandchildren, supplying lots of loves, hugs and kisses!
Pulling into the driveway to have a small hurling body headlong into my body was like winning a ticket to be the first person on the moon! Shoots and screams of GRANDMA was like a symphony playing in an auditory illusion for my soul.
So yes, I leave for Oregon tomorrow for my grandson's second birthday in disbelief that time flies even faster the second time around! Just a blink of the eye and their parents were all grown up and on their own...now...I can only breathe deeply and enjoy every moment hoping that every moment will slow down enough to enjoy every second!
Who knew growing older and being a grandma was the best kept secret of life!