Friday, September 10, 2010

Grandparents Day

I have just returned home from Grandparents Day at my granddaughter's school. My wife and I were two of the last grandparents to arrive. As we walked down the hall to Chloe's classroom we could see her sitting at a small table looking rather dejected. I guess she wasn't sure if we were going to make it or not. When she saw us her whole face lit up. She showed me her usual affection. I've said it many times but I will say it again. No one in my entire life has ever showed me as much love as my granddaughter. I'm not sure what I do to be so loved. As soon as we got settled, the teacher, who looked like a college kid to me, read a story about grandparents. Then all the children worked with their grandparents to draw pictures of all the fun stuff they do with their grandparents. Chloe's picture included swimming in her "shark" pool, making pet rocks, pretending to be a Komodo dragon, and eating at McDonald's. The little kid next to me told me that his grandparents couldn't be there today because they were in Africa. He went on to explain to me that Africa was once part of Pangaea. Most adults don't know what Pangaea is but this six year old did. After all the classroom activities we had to march in single file to the cafeteria for lunch. I ate fried chicken, mashed potatoes with gravy, chocolate milk, and a fudgesicle with approximately 100 first graders. I was happy to see such a diversity of students but saddened to realize that many of them live very far away from the school and have long bus rides each day. My granddaughter is one of the fortunate ones who lives in the same neighborhood as her school.

The most challenging part of the day was leaving. Chloe did not want me to leave and the teacher practically had to pull her off me. Finally the teacher took her by the hand and walked her back to her classroom. She looked so sad and it made me sad to see her that way. I knew from experience that she would get over it quickly and that she would get back into the routine of her day. As I write these notes she is probably back to normal, laughing and talking with her friends.

It's awesome being a grandparent.

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