[photo removed because i do that sometimes]
My aunt drove my grandmother to Colorado to visit her childhood friend. We met up with them on Monday afternoon. The boys played on a playground with my aunt and Fritz, while my grandmother and I sat on this bench and just...talked. I have never just talked with my grandmother. Just sitting, and just talking, I was just a granddaughter. It was a nice place to be: a very different place from being just a mom. There are many past details she remembers: She told me about the schoolhouse where she went to primary school. Thirteen kids, one teacher: Miss Elizabeth West. The little kids mispronounced it: Lizbett Wetts. And then there were high school friends, who coincidentally shared the same surname that I now have.
"Grandma," I said, "did you know that's my last name now?"
"Oh!" She exclaimed.
I translated its meaning from the German.
"Well! I didn't know that!" We laughed.
I think about how her memories of childhood are so strongly with her. I think about how these are the very memories that my boys are making today and will spend the next decade making.
My grandmother was reliving moments from decades ago, but me? I was in the very moment of that very day. Our positions have flipped: for years, she recorded details about my life. And Monday, I was mentally recording her details.
They say children live in the moment and that, as parents, we should find our inspiration in this. But sitting with my grandmother, trying to hold on to all her details, I was not merely inspired, I was forced to be in the moment. Maybe that is because now, I'm just a granddaughter. I'm no longer specific facts to be recorded. And it was okay – no, it was more than okay – it was like being wrapped in a cozy blanket. It was a perspective and calm that I really needed. I'll take the Moment of Now with My Grandmother any time.