I never had a grandfather growing up. I was surrounded by strong, loving, generous, spirited, and feisty southern bells. I used to daydream of what having a grandpa would be like. It seemed to my young mind that grandpa’s held a magic unlike all these women around me, that they held the key to secrets of life I was missing out on. I also thought all grandpas could whittle wood, and I thought this past time was part of the secret life of grandpas.
I didn’t have a grandpa, but I did have one heck of a dad. The best dad actually. And what I couldn’t conceive of then, was that the best dads make extraordinary grandpas – or Pop Pops in this case.
I am overjoyed that my kids have a Pop Pop. Now, Pop Pop does not whittle wood, but watching the way he speaks to and interacts with my kids, I’m convinced the secrets to life only grandpas know are being whispered, and tickled, and laughed, and shared. I see the magic in the love between these tiny new people I helped create and this older, wiser father of mine. Their relationship with him is completely different from mine. There is an ease and steadiness that comes from experience, and a new depth of love that grows with every generation. There is this unspoken bond of truth like two souls acknowledging each other as both equals in love and learning.
I cherish these relationships, because that’s the good stuff. Relationships and experiences are what create a life. I have a permanent smile plastered on my face everyday Pop Pop is here because I get to live vicariously through my kids. I get to see them enveloped in that magical grandpa love, and I don’t need to know the secrets. I’m perfectly happy watching the show.
“The closest friends I made all through life have been people who also grew up close to a loved and loving grandmother or grandfather.” – Margaret Mead