A Collection Of Experiences and Observations


My heart ached as we reluctantly backed out of the driveway to begin the long journey back to our home in New Mexico. Tears, too many to contain, spilled out, streaming down my cheeks.

Just three years earlier my husband had accepted a temporary employment position at the Department of Energy in Washington, D.C. This three-year-stint would forever change our family. A new son-in-law and the birth of our first grandson never entered the scope of our imaginations.

While there, two of our daughters, away at college, spent holidays and summers with us. Involvement in the thriving young adult ministry at the church we chose to attend provided opportunity for them to hangout with other Christian singles. God’s timing with our move to Northern Virginia could not have been better. But, then again, He is the God of perfect timing.

A year into our time there, Erin and Jeff married at the church where they met. We were thrilled when Jeff graduated and accepted his first employment close by. Eleven months after the wedding, our first grandson, Sam, made his grand appearance.

We immediately fell in love with this little guy and delighted in the fact that we got to be such a major part of his life. A few months after Sam’s birth, we welcomed Erin, Jeff, and baby Sam to temporarily live in our basement so they could save for a place of their own.

On days Erin worked I kept Sam. I came to adore this boy and the grandmother/grandson bond grew stronger as each day passed. Keenly aware of how the years have a habit of swiftly moving by, I refused to allow myself to think about that fateful day of our departure back to New Mexico.

Fast forward to 2018.

Next month the first two of our thirteen grandkids graduate from high school, Sam being one of them. I reflect on the years and wonder how this happened so quickly. I still clearly remember the intense pain of driving away as one-year-old Sam enthusiastically waved his tiny hand, bidding us good-bye. I knew I would see him again, but my heart, in the agony of the moment, ached as if this would be the last time.

The years have brought many celebratory moments, but amid the joyful moments, concern and anxiety rear their ugly heads. I know Sam’s parents often sit at their table together, sipping coffee in the quietness of early morning and discuss the future of their children. Just as other parents do, they question if this firstborn possesses the maturity to leave the nest in a few short months. Then they pray.

The special bond of this Nana with her grandson who now towers over her has not wavered, even through all the ups and downs. He has done some foolish things, like writing POOP in the wet cement of a city sidewalk. But, as I pore over a picture of him leading a Bible study in Cambodia, I see quite a different side of this grandson: a mature, compassionate young man. Several young kids sit on the floor, scrunched up against him, and he shares Jesus with them.

This #2 grandchild shows his love for me in odd, but engaging ways that only a grandmother would understand, like calling me Nana Banana which at some point in time became Nanners. He’s the only grandchild who has assigned me special nicknames. There are a few pictures of the two of us where he is sniffing my hair-he says it smells good. I get annoyed at his lack of seriousness when the camera comes out. But today as I write this, I smile, and realize all of these things are his odd, but endearing way of saying, “I love you, Nanners.”

I dearly love all my grandchildren, but sometimes there is that one who touches your heart in a peculiar, but special sort of way.

My prayer for you, Sam, will intensify as you enter this daunting new stage of life. I pray for safety and health, and for choice of friends. But mostly I pray you stay focused on Jesus and grow in wisdom and stature into a godly young man.

I have no doubt that by the grace of God you will find your way.

So, beloved grandson of mine, you better not make me eat my words!

Love You, Nana




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