It was one of the most exciting and gloriously happy days I had ever known. November 24, 1996, the day our first grandchild was born. And very quickly Matthew became a focus in our lives. A loving, precious, warm presence that created in us a powerful and overwhelming love.
Watching a vulnerable, dependent baby develop into a strong, vibrant teenager was a process that happened right before our eyes.
I remember the time Matty, as he liked to be called when he was about three years old, led the family around the living room in a musical salute. He played the tooting instrument, we followed him banging drums, crashing cymbals and jingling bells. The three year old Pied Piper headed the parade of four grandparents and all the children in the house following supportively behind, enchanted with our clever, talented, charismatic grandson. There was never a happier march.
“Matty” became way too babyish a name for the elementary school student, who informed us that he was now to be addressed as “Matthew.”
Aren’t we lucky he didn’t request his title of address as “Sir Matthew?”
Matthew progressed and grew until in 8th grade he took on the adult name of “Matt.”
Matt by now was big brother to David and Julia. Every morning at 8AM their mother, my daughter Melinda, drove them to school. She often called for a chat between the school drop off and her appointments and errands. That’s when I heard her description of what is new in the lives of my grand school children as they developed their academic skills.
One morning this fall, when I hadn’t heard from her I called at 8AM and asked, “Did you just leave the children off at school?”
“Not this morning, Mom,” she answered, “Matt drove them to school today!”
And time moves ahead more quickly than any of us would wish…