Saturday, June 19, 2010

Again and again

The word “again” figures prominently in my life as nana to two-year-olds Molly Kate and Stella. Anyone associated with toddlers on a regular basis knows exactly what I mean. “Again” greets any activity that captures the interest of these little ones. For this grandmother, the word encompasses both delight and exhaustion.
Granddaughter Molly Kate

Granddaughter Stella

The delight part is multi-faceted. The satisfaction that a toddler’s enthusiastic “again” brings this grandmother has to equal the call for an encore at any major entertainment venue. It is amazing that our homespun playtime calls forth that “again” and sets little faces and bodies vibrating with gleeful anticipation. And then there is the delight of sending them into intense wonder or shrieks of laughter with actions as simple as leaning them backwards for an upside down look at the world, discussing how many noses, ears and eyes each of us has, singing silly songs, or inflicting loud and blubbery belly kisses.

The exhaustion part is inherent in the word “again.” A single “again” is rare. Toddlers seem capable of “again” into infinity and beyond. At this stage in their lives every single thing is brand new, and repetition is one way they become acquainted with their world and how it works.

That newness passes all too soon. I treasure the privilege of sharing it, and both the delight and the exhaustion are blessings. I will miss that toddler experience; but with four grandchildren beyond the toddler age, I know there are wonders galore still to come. And, of course, there is five-week-old grandson Walker. We have at least one more trip through toddlerhood to enjoy!

*Thank you to daughter-in-law Katie's family for photo of Molly Kate. Thanks to my niece Amanda Carpenter for photo of Stella.

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