Tag Archives: joy

In Honor of Grandsons – 2

It’s been way too long.

I’ve been writing short stories lately – two for an anthology by the Houston chapter of the American Christian Fiction Writers. That was a contest, and my two stories were finalists and chosen to be published in the anthology. That should come out in February, 2016.

I also wrote two short stories (and a third on the way) for an anthology by Jodie Renner, to raise money to help rescue children from child labor in Asia.

And then I’ve written two short stories for grandchildren. I’m finding that to be one of the most rewarding of writing experiences. One was written before the last post for Brooklyn. And the other I just finished and delivered within the past week, for Ethan, the newest addition to the grandchildren.

Ethan is the first child of our second son, Brad, and his wife, Jaymie. We visited them earlier this week in Charlotte, North Carolina. Ethan is a handsome little man. He has dark hair, like his mom, and lots of it. While we were there he spent most of his time eating and sleeping. And he likes to be held. So our special time was holding him while he slept. Such a sweetie. He’s only about 4 weeks old, so we are excited to see how he will interact with us when he is older.

We have one other grandson, Leighton. And he just turned three. In fact, Leighton’s and Ethan’s birthdays are 12 days apart. I’ve written about Leighton in a previous post. And he’s changing quickly with each month. Now wearing glasses, he looks like a little professor. When he was younger, he was so quiet. Now he talks constantly. Wow, he’s changing.

So why do granddads get so excited about grandsons?

I came up with the following reasons:

  1. We see them as the future of our family.
  2. They give us hope that we can start them off in the right direction.
  3. We want to help them avoid the mistakes we made.
  4. We want to avoid the mistakes of grandparenting that we made with parenting.
  5. We can enjoy being with them instead of worrying like a new parent.
  6. We see in them a legacy for the future.
  7. We hope that they can achieve that which we failed to achieve.
  8. They make what we worked for, saved, and built worthwhile. Now we can share it with them.
  9. When they’re young, we get to enjoy the age of innocence all over again.
  10. They remind us of when our children were young.
  11. They will actually listen to us, and hopefully learn from us.
  12. They’re not judgmental.
  13. They’re excited about spending time with us.
  14. And yes…we get to spoil them and send them home.

They are a hope for the future. Enjoy them while you can.

In Honor of Granddaughters – 3

Regan Rose. She turned two on July 11. We made it to her birthday party. She and her mom and dad (and future sister) live in northern Ohio. We don’t get to see them enough.

Regan is special, tiny and petite, and always on the go. With blond hair and blue eyes, she is going to be a boy magnet. I hope her dad is ready to watch her like a hawk.

She’s speaking in clear sentences already. All the time she spends with grandmother (babysitting) and other adults is showing up in a very precocious young lady.

She, like Averie, is cautious in opening up to people she is around. And that’s a good thing. Since we don’t visit her enough, it takes awhile for her to warm up to us each new time.

At her party, it was fun to watch her playing with cousins, blowing bubbles, competing for toys, and playing in the wading pool.

We need to find more times to visit Regan and her parents. She is growing up too quickly.

In Honor of Granddaughters

I promised that my next blog would be about visiting a new granddaughter. And it is.

But before that, an introduction. I googled Granddaughter’s Day. No such national holiday exists (that I could find). Now this is amazing in light of the fact that Hallmark and the flower industry have created a holiday for every possible occasion. And where the market for industry used to be the baby boomer generation, it should now be the baby boomers buying gifts for their grandchildren. So why has no one established Granddaughter’s Day, or even Grandchild’s Day? I don’t know.

Grandparent’s Day, this year, is September 13th. It is the first Sunday after Labor Day. So the date changes each year. In celebration of Grandparent’s Day this year, we’ll discuss grandchildren for the next four posts.

This post is dedicated to Brooklyn. She is our youngest grandchild at three months old. She was born seven weeks preme at 4 lb. 11 oz. She spent five weeks in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). Consequently she was in our thoughts and prayers daily. My son was fantastic about keeping us updated on her progress. And our daughter-in-law kept us up to date with pictures of Brooklyn as she progressed though her care in the NICU.

Brooklyn amazed everyone with how well she did as a preme. And we have been delighted to see her progress since she’s been home. Everyday there is a new picture, a new outfit. Yesterday’s picture (swim suit cover, sun hat, and shades) has to be the cutest picture of a granddaughter in Florida…ever.

So you can see that I was in love with my granddaughter even before we went to visit her. Two weeks ago we had the opportunity to spend about four days visiting Brooklyn and her mom and dad. My wife and I don’t like traveling, but the experience with Brooklyn was worth every minute of it. Holding her, feeding her, walking her when she was fussy, baby sitting for Mom and Dad – those are all memories we’ll never forget. And the kisses on that cute little Munchkin’s face. What a sweetie pie!

And hopefully, as she gets older, we’ll have more opportunities to visit and get acquainted, opportunities to influence her, teach her so she doesn’t make mistakes we made, and on and on. All the dreams grandparents have for their grandchildren. I guess we want to make up for the mistakes we made when we raised our own children.

So what dreams do you have for your grandchildren?

And who will be first to propose a National Granddaughter’s Dad and National Grandson’s Day?



True Joy is Born of Pain

I don’t have to tell you, if you’re a mother, that childbirth is one of the greatest pains you can experience. And I don’t have to tell you, if you have children, that the arrival of your expected child is one of the greatest joys you will ever experience.

I learned recently that the link between pain and joy extends beyond childbirth. And that’s part of the reason why I have been so tardy in posting a new blog – I was in the midst of pain. Not physical pain, but emotional pain. And this was real pain, I mean REAL PAIN!

Without going into too much detail, my office was under siege – by regulators. Our office undergoes regular inspections to document that part of our practice, the lab, is up to snuff. We had come through all of our previous inspections without problems. Then suddenly, with a new inspector, we were told that we had not been doing something that we should have been doing for years. The previous inspector had just overlooked it. And ignorance of the regulation was not an acceptable excuse. It was “our responsibility” to keep up on all the myriad of government regulatory changes. And further, we were in BIG trouble.

The inspectors threatened to shut down our practice. And they gave us about one week to accomplish a month’s worth of paperwork and changes. I believe they really wanted to put us out of business.

Well, we scurried and hurried, found help, and worked night and day. And by the grace if God, we made the deadline. We got the changes and paperwork in under the deadline, and the threats were lifted. We still have some additional work to do, but now we can come up for air.

But I can honestly say that the past two weeks have been two of the worst weeks of my life – trying to keep the practice going and taking care of patients, trying to find the help we needed, trying to get page after page of paperwork completed and sent off in the proper format. I worried. Would we make it? Would they really put me under? What would I do? How could some regulation that was not being enforced with the majority of physicians be so important as to be treated as life and death? And I didn’t sleep. My ulcer flared. I was a mess. It was real emotional pain.

I didn’t birth a baby. I didn’t pass a kidney stone. But when we made the deadline, when the threat of professional death was lifted, I felt a joy like none I had recently experienced. And it taught me that we have to pass through the dark valleys before we can truly experience the exhilaration of the mountain tops. To experience true joy, we have to suffer first.

What pain have you experienced that has led to real joy?