By Nina Odele
When I was a little girl, I thought all grandparents had to be at least 100 years old. Maybe there was some sort of rule that they be old and wrinkled up? Of course, that was from a child’s perspective. Now, at 53 years old, I have four wonderful grandchildren with another on his way any day now!
I must confess that at first I wasn’t too sure about my new role as “Nana”. It was similar to becoming a Mom for the first time — that little bit of nervousness combined with anticipation and excitement –Am I worthy? — that sort of thing. However, just like when my own children were born, “Nana-hood” came quite naturally for me. Now I can’t even imagine not having these four wonderful kids as a part of my life. They are walking, talking, “Blessings from Heaven!”
The circle of life is so amazing. Mother passed away four months ago in April 2010. Dad passed several years ago. When Mother passed it suddenly dawned upon me that now I’m officially an “orphan”. Sounds a bit silly at my age, but it really does take some getting used to. There are still times when I want to pick up the phone and call my parents, but then reality sets in. I heave a huge sigh then turn to the positive. I can “talk” to my parents anytime I want to now! They just don’t answer back, which is not necessarily such a bad deal in Mother’s case. We locked horns all my life, but I honestly do miss her with all my heart.
Mother loved gardening. It was her life’s passion. Gardening brought her the joy that nothing else could. The last thing Mother ever planted with her own bare hands was a small crop of pumpkins. She adored the fall season. It was her absolute very favorite time of the year. For whatever reason, this year’s pumpkin crop came to fruition at the beginning of August. Go figure! The crop bore five lovely pumpkins. Interestingly enough, the exact right amount for each of Mother’s great grandchildren to have one, even the new little one, as yet unborn. I washed the pumpkins and brought them to the house.
Last weekend, all the grandkids were here for a visit. I let them each choose their very own pumpkin to take home. I also explained that Great Grandma grew those pumpkins just for them. My grandkids are all very young still, so I’m not sure if they caught the meaning of just how extremely special those particular pumpkins are. In any case, it warmed my heart beyond belief to see them cruising around with their brand new pumpkins. There’s no doubt in my mind that Mother was smiling down at all of us from Heaven that day. I thought about the whole circle of life thing. For our family, on that particular day, that circle had a color. It was orange.