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My Texas granddaughter is short and very sweet. She is the 13th member of the exclusive club whose 15 members get to call me ”Grandpa.” We traveled to Dallas for her gala second birthday. She is seen in the pic on the right with a small fraction of her birthday loot. She now has just enough hair for pigtails but is already girlishly aware of her clothing choices. Tireless, bright, and energetic, she seemed to know the names of every animal and much else in a visit to the marvelous Perot Natural History Museum.
I find that with my grandsons (as with my sons) that my disposition to them when they arrive is colored by impatience for when they are old enough to throw a ball or bait a hook, and we mostly just roughhouse in the meantime. I sometimes think that the father-son relationship is mostly a series of initiation rites.
The sheer sweetness of little girls is something to enjoy in the moment unconditionally. I have always been a little awed by my daughters from the moment each arrived.
From the outside, caring for and about children can appear burdensome, but time tends to erode the memory of the hassles and stresses and intensify the abiding satisfactions of love and the awareness of what a gift it was to experience all that.
And getting a birthday hug from that short, sweet little one is an amazing gift all by itself.Published in