I popped over to visit the little wolf pack last night after working and they immediately went for their shoes. It's the universal sign for - I'm going with you. When small grandchildren look at me with big eyes and say, Can I go with you? Can I spend the night with you? as they are putting on the second shoes I have a hard time saying, no. But I did draw the line at the big kids which means I'm too tired to working on potty training issues tonight.
Five minutes later I am driving away and on the way home with two happy kids in the backseat. Except they then begin to fight. The kind of No, you're not, yes I am, no you're not that is designed to drive parents and even grandparents insane. It's the old Stop touching me conversation that can take place for over a thousand miles without a child seemingly taking a breath in between.
Except last night I was too tired to deal with a seven year old and four year old having an eternal argument over imaginary lines. Instead I said -
LOOK! None of that matters! It doesn't matter! All that matters is that right now we are driving down the road. Just the three of us. We are in this car and it's winter and the trees are bare. The moon is out and it is 32 degrees and here we are in this present moment, in this car, on this road, driving through the woods to Zaza's house. And, we all love each other very, much. This is our reality. This is this moment that we are living in. This is our now.
Then there was a contemplative silence from the backseat. No more fighting. I turned on Joe Cocker for the rest of the journey.
Then we had hot chocolate and movies and coloring.
Being a Zaza, a Pawpaw, a Nana or Boo - It's what you make it. The way you make it. I figure these moments where things are not just the same old, same old stoptouchingyourbrother moments will make for better memories. Or at least for stranger stories. And, I can roll with that.
A little advice. Don't take your mother to the doctor and then feel guilty about leaving Big Dog and Little Dog so you tell them they can go for a RIDE when the doctors office is the designation. They think they are going to the PARK. They think they are going for a WALK. They do not think you are late for an appointment and need to take six bags, a bottle of water, a blanket, a coat, and get all in the door while leaving them behind, noses pressed out the crack in the windows.
A very special shout out and Thank you to Dr. WayneDay and his crew at Belle Meade Dermatology. They made mom's visit as painless and quick as possible, were downright genuine and put her at ease. I had picked up six magazines to take back to the little room where we expected to wait two hours for a doctor. Someone saw us before we could turn the first page. Bravo guys on being a beautiful exception to the rule. (But you still have a great mag selection. Might just arrive early next time to catch up on some reading.
Any Doc appt can be a little stressful in spite of how great everyone is so I decided getting Mom something cold to drink and a Fat Mo's burger would be just the ticket followed by a drive through our very own Central Park - Warner Parks in West Nash. So Beautiful. Watched the waning light looking out over the steeplechase field as the dogs alternately whined and tried to eat our hamburgers. I shared one with them, cranked the car and hit the trail. Mom pointed out -
It's really pretty and would be prettier if someone would pick up all those dead trees.
Ummm, kinda big place. Like, really big place. Nature doing it's thing and all that.
I'm just saying.
Big Dog and Little Dog got a chance to pull me through the cold across a field.
Back in the car I put in one of Mom's mixed cd's and drove on. Titan and Duncan stuck white noses out windows, sniffed the air. We spotted three deer. And mom said -
Look, it's just a baby.
Creedence Clearwater sang - I see a Bad Moon Arising.
I just love this song.
I turned up the volume. The sky grew darker. Drove left/right/round in circles like we were lost, like we would never find our way out, like lost was the only way we knew.
Then we emerged from the woods, cleared the trees, the lights of Nashville glittering.
Look, at the lights. And, there's a church steeple. We made it. We're not lost.
I turned due West and let the music take us all the way home.