What’s the most important thing in life? RAMifications 11-6-13

Posted November 4, 2013 at 6:25 pm

What’s the most important thing in life?

People besides me have grandchildren. The experience isn’t unique to me; but my grandchildren are unique to me.

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Ruth A. Moller

I feel pangs of envy when it comes to having grandchildren who live near by. It takes dedicated effort to see the kids throughout the year.

I visited my Minnesota grandkids October 25-27. The weather was okay, and I could take in Minnesota’s beautiful fall scenery. But however you look at it, it’s a long, long trail a’ winding.

There’s a lot to cram in to a couple of days. Friday’s highlight was the annual carving of the pumpkins at the Methodist Church. Ty wanted to do something after that, but he was reminded of an early wakeup call.

And early it was. We were supposed to be on the road at 6 a.m. I was ready, but it took until 6:30 for my ride to arrive…they had overslept.

A 5K race was the highlight, sponsored as a fundraiser by a 4-H group. There were also kid games for non-runners, snacks, Halloween Bingo, and judging of costumes. Did I mention the building wasn’t heated?

Ty placed third in his age group in the race, and received a medal. That was good. So was lunch, swimming at the hotel pool, catching a couple of rummage sales, checking out the street markets, and finally having dinner in Faribault at an old depot. I also had to meet Ty’s hermit crabs and listen to Brooke’s “interview with herself” for school.

We ran out of time, and the haunted house trip didn’t come to pass. It would happen before Halloween, but not for Grandma, and Tyler was very unhappy about that. Grandma was beat, and so were the kids…they just didn’t want to admit it.

But as good as the “things to see and do” are, the important part is to spend time with the kids. It may change as they get older, but for now I revel in their unsolicited hugs and hand squeezes, and being told, “I’m glad you came,” and “I love you, Grandma.”

Heaven can’t get much better than that.

Grandson Zane is also a great hugger, and he likes to have private conversations with me.

My two eldest grandchildren are unfailingly caring and polite. I talked to my oldest after I got home from Minnesota, and he volunteered, “I miss you, Grandma.”

Same here. I hope they can make it home for Christmas.

This all boils down to never taking relationships for granted. Cultivate them, appreciate them, treasure them.

I’m aware that some families have disagreements and grow far apart. Sometimes it is over land or inheritance; sometimes it is a difference of opinion that gets out of hand. Sometimes it is not going to the effort to keep in touch (“I am so busy!”).

The fact remains kids and grandkids grow up far too quickly. Parents and grandparents age faster than anticipated. Our siblings also get busy…not to mention cousins and other relatives.

I’ve mentioned several times it would be good to hold a reunion on my dad’s side of the family, other than getting together for a funeral. Those I mention it to agree we “should” do it, but gosh, everyone is so busy.

Mom used to comment that she thought priorities were wrong when people make great effort to get to a funeral…of someone they haven’t seen in ages. That “visit” doesn’t do much for the person who is dead. Better to keep in close touch when they are alive. I concur.

The time will come when I won’t be able to drive such long distances. The time may come when those grandkids I treasure are too far away.

Cherish time with those you love whenever you can. The bottom line is, that’s what counts.

RAM Ty with pumpkin.jpg

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