I had been planning a trip to visit my son and his family for a long time so I was excited when the time finally come for us to go to Cincinnati. It is hard to explain the attraction to grandkids. They are way, way better than kids. Maybe it is because they look like your children when they were young or maybe it is just that blood is thicker than water, who knows? At any rate, I'm crazy about my grandkids.
I have three. Sophie, who is a three year old diva, and Owen and James who are one year old and absolutely perfect. The twins had a rough start in life but they fought through it all with an energy and commitment to growing strong that was unbelievable. Although they are still tiny compared to other one year olds, they are strong and healthy. What a gift they are!
However, when I finally got to my son's house to see them after 2 months without seeing them, Owen, who has always given me a big smile when I showed up, began to cry and reach for his mother when I reached out to pick him up. I was devastated. Of course, I know that he is just a baby and that all babies go through a stage where they are leery about going to strangers. I'm not a stranger! I'm his grandma who has always loved and wanted the best for him. Of course, after we were there for a few hours, Owen was crawling all over my lap and showing me all the new things that he could do. But throughout the weekend, he was crawling away from me looking for his mom whenever he was upset. Understanding what is going on is very different from not being affected by it. It was heart breaking when he cried and crawled away from me.
James, on the other hand, was willing to let me hold him right away and gave me a great big smile. James looks almost exactly like my son when he was a baby. He has bright eyes and an engaging laugh. What joy he brings to my life. James is completely focused on climbing and rarely has his feet on the ground. The same is true of Owen. Always focused on the next big thing he is learning.
Sophie, my first born grandkid is simply amazing. She is loving and smart and beautiful and funny and headstrong. She has known exactly what she wanted ever since she was born. She is three going on 18. She is wise beyond her years. Sophie loves her brothers and is always glad to see me. We have spent many hours having tea parties and dressing up and coloring and going for walks, etc. I have been able to forge a special bond with her. Sophie never cried when I picked her up and her face lights up when I come into the room. I am so thankful for having such a good relationship with her.
I know that kids will be kids and always do and say what they think. And, I'm actually very grateful for that. Their unexpected pronouncements are always so entertaining. I hope that Owen quickly outgrows his fear of me and that James never gets it. Of course, if he does, I'll be disappointed and hurt just like I was when Owen did it. However, I will understand that it is part of the growing process and not a reflection of his feelings about me.
Still and all, it was horrific seeing the fear and panic in Owen's eyes when I reached for him. I hope I don't ever see that in his eyes again. If I do, I'll deal with it but it isn't easy to let it go.