I need an appointment. This will be no ordinary time together; there will be no one else there, no cell phone, no flickering screen and no loud music.
You’re old enough and experienced in presenting yourself; I want an Oprah style interview with the two of us facing each other (without the camera and crew).
Because somehow I’ve lost you.
You, the boy who would sit so close to me that even the dog couldn’t get between us. You, the boy who would lie face-to-face in bed with your thumb in your mouth and your wide eyes gazing into my eyes until your lashes fluttered softly closed and your breath was rhythmic in sleep. You, who would clutch my hand on the way into your classroom; your warm little hand still hesitating to reach for the teacher’s as she received your lunch box. You, the first man who shocked me with a deep voice on the telephone saying, “Grammy?”
What are your days like now? What are you thinking? What drives you?
I understand that time changes things between and grandmother and a grandson. You are smiling and loving to me when we meet. You enjoy your minutes with me in the slices between your other lives. There’s nothing wrong with our relationship for this moment in time. We have a strong bond that can’t be broken.
And for me there is something missing.
I want to know what is sparking your curiosity. I want to know what you are reading. I want to know how you feel about life and the hereafter.
Who are your best friends? Why? Who do you love? Does he or she love you back?
Why do you work out? Is it to soothe your frustration or to increase your strength? And if so, for what? For your health? For yearned-for success in a sport? For an attractive body?
Grant me this hearing, dearest young man. After that I will go home sated. And for a time I will be content with strong but fleeting hugs. I’ll go home and be happy with intermittent text messages and an occasional dinner with you and your family.
Until the next time…
That’s such a beautiful letter again! I know this feeling when you used to very close to somebody, but then your life ways deviate or you’re just busy with other things, and suddenly you realize that, while everything is still “fine” on the outside, you have somehow lost the real connection to that person on the inside. In my own words, I’d say what you wish for is a real encounter. And I can imagine that many people (at least the ones who’re interesting in something more than everything being well and nice-looking on the outside) long for that. A real encounter means two things: opening up and truly listening. Both tend to enhance each other, when both sides are willing to be part of the communication, because opening up will often make the other person listen more, and listening will create an atmosphere of trust that enables the other one to open up. I hope you’ll have an encounter like that – Oprah style, minus the audience and cameras. 😉
I’m looking forward to that time with him (this week). I have it scheduled, so now it will depend on my ability to listen and make him comfortable in our connection with each other. I think there are certain times in life when the difference in age seems more pronounced. I don’t want him to think of me as young, I just want him to recognize that I remain the person I have always been, someone who loves him and cares about his life.
I love that. I’m crossing my fingers for a good encounter! 🙂
Beautiful. I am not blessed with a grand child, but this letter could well be from me to my 41 year old only child, son. Part of growing up, for him and more importantly for me is to reconcile myself to the reality of such distance building between the two of us and to accept it as inevitable.
Yes, Ramana. I find that with all of my grown descendants the pleasure of seeing their independence is much enhanced by moments of “bridging the gap”. I love the times we come together in person or by phone and talk of “real” things.
Aww, you made me cry. 😦 Like Rummuser, I was thinking of my son, almost 21, in college, doin’ his own thiing…and my high-schooler who is also on his way to doin’ his own thing. But, I guess that’s what being a parent is all about — raising your children to do their own thing. Still, the feelings you write about are there. I’m finding parenting can be sometimes bittersweet as my kids get older. Sure hope you get your interview, and that it is more than just an interview.
Well, I have it scheduled. Can’t wait to see him. I haven’t decided whether to show him the letter or just ask the questions:)
Not being a grandmother – yet – myself…this reminds me of my own relationship with my grandmother. Now – I’m wishing that as an adult – I’d spent more time with her..had more conversations..shared more. But when you’re young and busy with this business of getting on with life..you don’t know (I didn’t) how precious those relationships really are.
It’s so true. I even have those regrets about my parents to some degree. But, the good thing is that I understand it. I’m not feeling abused or neglected. I’m just aware that the ball is always in my court nowadays.
I feel the same way about my youngest son. He’s so busy, his life so full, and I miss knowing all those details he used to share. Each time I see him, I want to just hold on and pull him close and say, “Tell me everything.” I hope you … and I … both get those “appointments” soon.
Well, I have mine tonight!
[…] A mother of four and grandmother of nine who chose to remain anonymous wrote a letter to her grandson asking for an “appointment.” She seeks to schedule a private meeting free of distractions because, she says, “somehow I lost you.” Yes, they still see each other. Yes, they enjoy what little time they spend together. But, she says, “for me there is something missing.” She wants more of him – to know what he’s reading, how he feels about life, who his best friends are. “Grant me this hearing, young man,” she implores. If he does, she promises, she’ll go home “content with fleeting hugs and intermittent text messages.” https://alettertomychildren.wordpress.com/2012/02/21/2074/ […]