Thursday, March 22, 2012

On the beauty of grandparents

My beautiful mom and dad
My parents have been in town for the past few weeks, visiting from Hawaii.  I always marvel at how comfortable and right it feels when they're around, but I've never understood exactly why.  I think I finally caught a glimmer of understanding one evening when we were at my parents' house here last week.

We had just finished a family dinner.  Everyone was happily ruminating.  The dull roar of kid play resounded throughout the house.  Naturally, there were still dishes to be taken care of, and mom and I gravitated toward them, quietly scraping, rinsing and washing.  I was startled when I realized how deeply this simple work moved me.

Here I was, working side by side with another mom, and we were doing what mothers do best: seeing what needs to be done and simply doing it.  There was no cajoling or bargaining to do, no complaints or laments, just quiet togetherness in work.  This is when I understood why having my parents and in laws around is such a beautiful thing to me.

When they are near, I feel companionship in the hard work that Brandon and I are doing in raising up these five children.  It is a blessing to know that I can call up any grandparent, asking if they might be able to watch over a child at the last minute, and not to feel I'm intruding, or that I needed to convince anyone to do my bidding.  They know what it takes to raise a child up into a strong and good adult.  It is hard work; they have done it, and done it well.

I'm thankful that my grandparents were there to support my parents, whether in person through visits across the ocean, or through phone calls of encouragement and inspiration to my mom and dad.  I'm thankful they took the time to acknowledge each grandchild they had, recognizing their loves and talents.  I see my parents and Brandon's parents following in their good and noble footsteps, and I feel brave.  I know that even with my shortcomings, my children have great mentors and friends in their grandparents.  My rough spots are smoothed by the kindness and indulgent love of grandparents.  God has given me more than I could have hoped for as a parent.  He has given my children beautiful grandparents.

On that note, I share pictures I took of my parents in a brief 10 minute window between rain and hail on the first day of spring!

We walked to our house with grandma and grandpa after the mini photo shoot.  Maia found a puddle!
Checking to be sure everyone sees the ripples she has made

Running home!

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