(Disclaimer: I started writing this one month ago amidst the beginning of our “can’t see the grandkids” experience due to this Covid-19 pandemic. I couldn’t finish it that day because I became too weepy. These days of Facetime visits and video updates bring small delights, but I still miss his little hands.)
I spent the last few days putting together an assortment of hands-on items into an activity book for our 5 month-old grandson. The finished product made its way into his realm of discovery yesterday. I didn’t see his immediate response to it, or have the opportunity to guide his wee hands over the pages. Our son and daughter-in-law picked it up from our front porch allowing for the necessary social distancing. I stood near but away from the assembled bins and bags I had carefully packed to transfer to their home.
The conversation we shared as they gathered up the goods framed the feelings we conveyed by the looks we gave each other. Disbelief and dismay etched on our faces as we recognized we would usually be enveloped in each other’s hugs at a time like this. I could only share quick explanations of what I had put together for them since little Fraser began crying as he sat alone in the car, strapped into his safe and isolated car seat.
Our front porch, a loading and pick-up zone, a bridge between our home to theirs. A station at which I place carefully chosen things I would like to share with them, but cannot at this time because I am too vulnerable to be in close proximity with them.
As I contemplate what I miss most during these weeks of social distancing and isolation from my grandson, I struggle with the loss of the softness and sureness of his little hands. I want so desperately to simply connect again in the way that Nana’s have all through time.
My hands to yours…
Little one, I cannot lift up your tiny fingers and marvel at your strong clasp on mine. Little one, I cannot trace the designs of your movements as you tactilely define your environment. I cannot see every nuance of your little eyes as they light up with delight or discovery. I only know that as I poured my heart and soul, my imagination and creativity into this unique baby activity book for you, I gathered up your little hands into mine and somehow, someway, spiritually or purely because our love exists without physical boundaries…I opened this book with you.
My hands to yours…