Twelve years ago today Studly Doright and I became grandparents for the first time when our son’s daughter, Dominique Grace, entered the world. She was incredibly beautiful, a perfectly round porcelain-like face with wide open blue eyes that seemed to say, “Hey, I know you!”
From the first moment I saw her, the moment I first held her, I felt love beyond any I’d ever experienced. This tiny human, this connection to the future made my life complete in ways it had never been before. Ok, I was smitten. I didn’t want to put her down. I guess I would still be holding her if someone else hadn’t insisted that they wanted a turn.
As an infant she gave her parents fits. She didn’t much like to sleep, so many hours were spent trying to find ways to soothe her. I didn’t live close enough to help, and I felt pretty helpless listening to their woes. We might chalk their troubles up to payback, though. Her dad wasn’t the easiest infant to care for either.
As she became more autonomous, there was nothing that didn’t interest our Dominique. She loved, and still loves art and animals and kind people. When she was three the highest compliment she could pay a person was that they were so nice they even liked ants. She’s become quite an avid reader, as well, (that makes her Nana incredibly happy) and she can run like the wind. Have I mentioned that Dominique is still quite beautiful?
I cannot believe that she is twelve and a sixth grader. It seems like just a heartbeat ago that I cradled her in my arms and told her how much I loved her. She doesn’t really go for that mushy stuff these days, and that’s okay. Grandmothers have really good memories.
Since I’m not a grandmother who knits or bakes or sews, I’ve written stories for my grandchildren. Here is Dominique’s. It’s all true, except maybe the last line. Happy birthday, Dominique Grace. We love you more every day.
“The Girl and the Butterfly”
One little butterfly, orange and black
Circled the flowers in the summer garden.
One little girl, in red, white, and blue
Danced around the flowers in the summer garden.
“Here, little butterfly!” called the girl.
But the butterfly flew higher than the girl could jump,
And faster than the girl could run.
“Please!” said the girl.
No matter how hard she tried, the girl could not catch the butterfly.
“You must let the butterfly come to you when he is ready,” said Mama.
“I don’t think he will ever be ready,” sighed the little girl.
“Here, sweetheart, I have an idea,” said Mama. “Hold out your hand.”
Mama poured a drop of orange juice into the girl’s hand.
“Now hold out your hand and stay very still.”
The girl did just that.
And would you believe it? The butterfly landed ever so lightly onto the girl’s hand.
The girl smiled at the butterfly.
And after sipping the juice, the butterfly smiled back.
Peace, a People!