Gramasylum has been on the shelf for three weeks. The first week of November I got word my mother was not doing well. We moved her to a new care facility and so I made flight plans to go see her. The day before I was scheduled to leave I got word she was declining pretty fast. I arrived on a Thursday evening. My mother passed away Saturday at 6 p.m. It was fast. I was there holding her hand and stroking her hair as she left this world. All three of my sisters and my brother were there, too. And, she knew we were there. It was a sad, precious, and sacred time. I am so grateful that I was able to be there, that my siblingss were all there together. Believe it or not it set the tone for Thanksgiving coming up the very next week. Gramasylum took to the shelf for these three weeks (almost four) but my own mother's dying actually energized my resolve to be as crazy a grandma as possible. So. Gramasylum is back. With renewed energy!
It started with a simple observation about a t-shirt. Sitting at the counter for Thanksgiving dinner Laurel commented about the dinosaur on Kasen's t-shirt. Laurel, 4, identified it as a T Rex. Kasen, 3, replied, "No, it's a dinosaur." Laurel continued the conversation insisting that it was a T Rex. Kasen continued to correct her telling her it was a dinosaur. The tone and volume intensified. Laurel tried very patiently to tutor Kasen in the particulars of the varieties of dinosaurs. Kasen was not to be tutored. His resolve matched her patience perfectly. The conversation was going nowhere good.
The adults at the big table were now fully engaged in following the argument ensuing at the counter. And no one was intervening, yet. A sneak peak toward the counter without disrupting the
going-nowhere conversation revealed the arms of both children were now folded tight and the jaws were set. The volley began.
"You are a pillow with a flower on it," Kasen retorted!
"You are an ear with a kiwi in it," Laurel proclaimed!
“Yeah, well you are a pickle in water,” Kasen volleyed back!
The adults were now laughing so hard turkey and dressing and potatoes were flying everywhere. Where did this pseudo name-calling come from? We could not wait to hear what was next. Then it turned serious.
"Then I am not going to talk to you anymore,” Laurel declared!
"I'm not going to talk to you," Kasen countered!
"Well then, I am not going to be play with you ever, ever again," Laurel replied.
"And I am not going to be your friend," Kasen countered.
Ok. Time for the adults to get involved. Kiwis and flowers are one thing. Breaking cousin love is entirely another. I approached the counter and did not try to tutor on dinosaurs and T Rexes, but on the importance of staying in relationship. I can imagine them in ten years heading out the door together to walk the beach. And in twelve or thirteen years driving away in a car to go to the mall or a movie or a game with friends. One day they could be a huge support to each other—not just cousins, but friends. I am not sure how much of what I told them they understood. But a few minutes later they were arm in arm running down the hall laughing and being as silly as usual. Such fun. Such a blessing. Only one of the many blessings I am grateful for this Thanksgiving. Kiwi ear, pickle in water, flower on a pillow--I just love these little people and their crazy talk.
Would love to hear from some of you Gramasylum readers! What crazy things are you doing these days with your granz or are your granz doing with you? Post a comment below. We all need the enouragment to be crazy.