There was a time, last February, where I just packed up my sons and flew to see my grandfather. I missed him. This year he turns 90 and, well, I missed him and wanted to spend time with him – so off I went.
My grandfather (at left) lives with my parents, a $400 flight or 11 hour drive away. That means we don’t see any of them as often as we’d like. While many parent friends ditch the kids with the grands on weekends, or for date nights, completing a double duty of quality grand time and free time for mom and dad, that’s a luxury we don’t get.
My boys see their grandparents maybe 3 or 4 times a year. We go out there once or twice, my parents come out here once or twice, and then we Skype or Face Time. So my boys know and love their grands, but don’t get to see them as often as we’d like.
Last night, my oldest said he couldn’t sleep because he missed his great grandmother. My Nan passed away 3 years ago. Zacharie was just 3, but he still misses her terribly. Same here, buddy.
Stop and think about the last time you saw your parents, your kids saw their grandparents, and how often your family gets together. If you all live in the same city, you’re lucky. You can see them daily, weekly, or more. Not everyone has that chance.
A new website, See Your Folks, encourages people to get out and see their parents. To underline the point, they ask for your parents’ ages, and how often you get to see them. Then it boldly tells you how many visits you have left before they die. The team behind the site says they created it because “we believe that increasing awareness of death can help us to make the most of our lives.”
For me and my parents,there are 50 visits left.
For my grandfather, well he’s already 8 years passed his expiry date, so every visit is one that is dipped in gold, bathed chocolate, rolled in diamonds, and savored like ice cream on a hot summer day.
We go to visit my parents and grandfather at the end of August. We’ll pack up the family and suck it up for the 11 hour drive (each way) so my kids (and me) can get the best treat ever – time with grandparents.
When was the last time you saw your folks?