“I miss Granny’s meatloaf.” my young adult son mentioned on the phone the other day. The comment seemed random as we weren’t actually talking about my husband’s beloved grandmother. Interestingly, it was the second comment in a two week span about missing one of her delicious food creations.
Granny passed away almost seven years ago. She was independent and active at 97 years old up until a month before she died. It almost seemed surreal when she did. Her life was so interwoven with others that we couldn’t imagine life or her neighborhood without her. So much of my children’s memories are connected to spending time at her house. Sometimes neighbors popped in and out. The table was a place of hospitality, favorite meals cooked upon request and sometimes new friends feasted with us.
Truthfully, my kids didn’t always appreciate those moments at the time. Jaunting off to a relative’s house, no matter who it is, was not always high on the daily priority list. Playtime beckoned. Naptime competed for attention. The thoughts of leaving Christmas morning presents and pajamas were often met with resistance. And honestly, to a tired parent, sometimes making those choices to connect felt weary at times. But these types of relationships are nothing to take for granted. And we know that our kids will eventually recognize them for the blessings that they are.
So my son’s comments caught me by surprise. While I certainly believe he missed her food, I think the memories of those moments, some special, some more ordinary, are bearing fruit. They give him roots in a time when recognizing how to respond to this new season of “adulting” comes through trial and error. Life seems overwhelming at times. But the seeds of identity, validation, and connectedness were planted. Not only for his benefit but to scatter onto others. Now, to be privy to that fruit ripening, makes every trip through the years worth it.
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