(This post is written by my husband John. We can just call him "Naturally Dad".)
Spending time with my Grandmother this past month has been wonderful. Seeing her face light up when she sees the kids is priceless. I didn't know what to expect and am so happy that we took this trip so the kids could really get to know their Great Grandmother... and me to connect with my grandmother. I'm seeing what a loving, sweet, playful person she is. Yesterday we took her outside in the yard behind the Autumn House and I told her to sit down on this "perfect little wooden chair". I helped her to sit and she looked up with a grin and said, "Hard as a log though". Another day I asked her if Pilot had hurt her when he jumped on her lap and scrambled up to give her kisses and hugs and she stopped walking and pretended to shrivel up in fear and sarcastically started saying how awful and terrible it was. We all had a big laugh. It has been really fun watching her joke around while playing ball with the kids and seeing her eat every single bite of a mountain of ice cream. She is full of warmth and love and it just pours out from the moment we see her until the moment we say goodbye each day.
As I connect with my history, I am awakening parts of myself. Flipping through old photos with my Grandmother, seeing the moments of her life in these books while listening to her sing her favorite songs to us is amazing. In some ways it feels like I am meeting her for the first time. Me as a father now with my children, I am relating in a different way. Even though she has trouble with her memory at almost 90 years old, she is in some ways, more open and able to share herself with me then before. She lives in the moment and seems to really be able to see the joy in everything which is a wonderful lesson to all of us.
But my favorite times are spent just holding her hand or putting my arm around her and feeling the warmth and love between us.
-John, "Naturally Dad"