I’ve finally come to realize that family is truly a gift and blessing from God. Didn’t think too much about it in my younger years, because we are who we are and really have no choice into which family we are born. But as I’ve traveled this life a bit I’ve realized that the family we are born into can make all the difference in the quality and quantity of our lives. Our family shapes, teaches and influences our every decision. Our earliest learning and modeling comes from our family. As much as we all say we will never be like our parents, we often find ourselves doing and saying many of the things they did- be it good or bad. I have vowed repeatedly I would never do this or that with my own children only to find myself repeating nearly verbatim an action or word made by my own parents. I comfort myself by saying things are different now and today it makes sense and is a sound response or decision. I am only fooling myself because in my mind I am thinking I can’t believe I am becoming my father. I remember going to my Grandma’s house when I was young. I was the second youngest of the cousins and learned a lot (good and bad) from observing the older ones. Although Grandma has been gone from this life more than 50 years, I always remember her saying, “ You are going to put your eye out with that thing.” I don’t recall what “That thing” was or what was even going on. Yet I clearly hear her voice and continually feel the need to somehow protect my eyes from certain destruction. Yesterday while having breakfast with our two granddaughters- 7 and 11 months- I hear Grandma’s voice again. The waitress where we were enjoying a Pirate/Princess breakfast had given each a small princess wand with a star on the end. Pretty harmless, made of plastic, lots of glittery stuff and something they were enjoying immensely. However I gasped immediately thinking---“Oh my gosh, be careful you will put your eye out with that thing.”
I talked myself in off the ledge of my panic attack without giving myself away. I didn’t mention it to either of our sons as they would have rolled their eyes and thought I had lost it. But I clearly heard my Grandmas warning and smiled. Fifty years later I am still listening Grandma. I hope my grandchildren will remember something I said 50 years from today and smile too.
I am also happy to report that both granddaughters as well as myself and my cousins who range in age from mid 50’s on up, still have our eyesight and to my knowledge not one of us have put our eyes out with a sharp object.