Wednesday, May 16, 2012

To Fairyland and Back Again

I haven't written in a bit because I've been away.

For a whole wonder-filled week I was on a grandparenting adventure. I'd wake every morning to a vista view of skyscraper pines and distant snowcapped mountains, and spend long morning hours rocking my newest grandbug and enjoying girl talk with her mama. We 'grown-ups' enjoyed huge cupfuls of fancy coffee, and breakfasts of hot bagels and homemade pancakes, and sweet moments spent listening to the wind in the trees and little Abigail sighing in her sleep.

Abigail is a fairy child if ever there was one in my family. Little and long, with laser eyes that look right into my soul. Every time we walked past a window together she'd arch her back and look out at the forest, as though remembering that that's where she came from. And if she was fretful, all that seemed necessary was to lay her down by a view of the trees. (Changing table right next to a window = best idea ever.) 

Three days into my visit and we were already on an adventure together as her parents drove us high into the mountains for a picnic. I closed my eyes to avoid seeing the narrow switchbacks and plummeting ravines, but Abigail rode peacefully in her carseat, staring out at the world with wise eyes. This was her turf. Such a nature sprite couldn't have found herself in a better situation, and I suddenly suspected that she'd be leading her daredevil parents on even bigger adventures than they were already used to. (And they're used to big adventures.) 

My daughter and her husband live in a sweet little California town full of quaint shops and cute cottages, and every drive down the hill towards it brought new discoveries: Clouds of roses billowing over a cheery picket fence, or chickens pecking in a cottage garden. The place was right up my alley and I couldn't help but ponder a move there, until I thought of my other grandbugs back at home, and then all plans went out the window. I'd just have to be that grandma. The one that travels and likes it. It'd mean buying some rugged shoes for the constant stepping out of my comfort zone.

Before my arrival I'd imagined that sitting in a chair and staring at that beautiful baby would last forever, but Time fast-forwarded through my week there. As was predicted, I didn't want to leave. The tears began days before my flight home again. Leaving my baby and her baby was enough to send me into a tailspin. I said goodbye and rode the tram to the airport terminal sobbing my heart out, surrounded by businessmen who openly stared at my tears. How could they not know what was going on inside me? My daughter, the one I suspected was too daredevilish to tie herself down with a child, has embarked on The Adventure of All Adventures.

And now both my Girlz have children of their own, families to raise, lives to live. My work here is ending.... Suddenly I realized that Time had fired a starter pistol and begun a mad dash with me roped to it unwillingly. And dragging my feet was not slowing us down....

I've been home for over a week now, and sometimes I wonder if my trip to California even happened at all or if I just dreamed it. My days are full once more playing catch-up with all I've got on my plate for the summer. There are drawings to do and gardens to weed and thoughts to think. And another trip to plan for.

Because I will see that fairy baby again while she's still tiny enough to hold in my hands. :)

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