Two hours ago I brought lunch to daughter Elena and grandson Cole. Teething is knocking steam out of the little man’s groove. Elena has him chewing white socks dipped in water and frozen stiff. Seems to work.
As I ate a hippie pizza with feta and Greek olives, Elena had a vegan sandwich. Cole lay on his blanket, and I went on and on: “I’ll be bringing Grandma by when she gets out of work so you can see her. Actually, I’m bringing her here so she can see you.” “Do you have any idea how happy you make me?” “I’m leaving two pieces of pizza for your daddy so he’ll have a snack when he gets home.” Cole had no clue what I was saying, but he was smiling huge.
It occurred to me that this kid enjoys a continuous loop of kind, affirming, happy talk. I don’t think he’s ever in the presence of angry voices. No tone or gesture communicates anything other than extravagant love. I don’t take any of this for granite, as one of my college English students once wrote. Nor do I take credit. This is good fortune, baby! For my part, I’ve done as much to mess up my loved ones’ lives as I’ve done to bless them.
After kisses on the head and piggies, I took joy out into the rain, into my truck . . .
. . . and into the grocery store, where I bought salmon, asparagus, and avocados for this evening’s supper. After Kathy (Grandma!) and I visit Cole–oh yeah and by the way Elena and son-in-law Matt–we’ll go to Starbucks and make plans for our vacation in Maine in late July. Then, home for some easy cooking. Home–shelter, warmth, love, forgiveness, understanding.
In ten minutes I’ll pick up a bottle of chardonnay, then stop at home long enough for a siesta and a couple chores. I’ll give the pets treats, which they always expect when I walk through the door. When I go upstairs for a delicious hour of sleep, I’ll stop on the landing, where Kathy has a plant that is flowering, longing to reach through the window and touch pure light.
When Kathy gets into the truck, I’ll kiss her, rest my cheek against her hair. She knows my weaknesses, but still loves me.
Just this: I’m grateful for these inconspicuous blessings, arriving quietly, humming a song that sounds like grace and mercy.