Call Me a Softie but the Innocence of Youth Warms Me to Tears
Thank you...I know, I'm too young to be a grandfather. That's what everybody says. People close to me say, "Oh, they're just being nice." I choose to believe I truly look like I'm too young for Peepeehood. Don't know what a Peepee is? Read on.....
When Evan (Matt's son) was old enough to start putting words together (about 3 hours after his birth, I think), instead of "Grampy" or the the French "Pépère" (which I wanted no part of), he started calling me Peepee. At first I thought, nahhhh, I don't think that's gonna happen. But you know, it's funny, the more a sweet little voice says even the most annoying of words, the easier they are to accept. In not long at all, Evvy, as he is called, had me wrapped around his tiny little finger and I longed to hear him call out to "Peepee."
For some reason, my own children who I love with all my heart, didn't move me in the same way as Evan. I think I'm at a point in my life where I have enough wisdom about children, having raised two, and enough distance as a grandparent to really get that this innocence and naivety about everything lasts for but a heartbeat and then it's gone, giving way to hurt, anger, distrust, sadness, jealousy and all the other not-so-savory things we adults have going on.
Seeing the little (3 1/2 year old) guy run across the room in the style of Buzz Lightyear yelling "imfimminy and beyond" or standing outside shoveling the lawn saying, "Daddy, wook," literally makes me well up and my heart almost bursts. I know Matt can't fully appreciate the preciousness of these moments...not like me. He's experiencing it for the first time. When Evan grows up and has children, Matt will then understand what I'm feeling now.
As I watched him playing in the snow today, I thought about the people in Newtown, Connecticut and what they've lost and I wept. I thanked God for what I have.