We all know, and we’ve all heard, the stories of grandparents and how they actually think they can “spoil” their grandchildren in any way, shape, time or fashion.
Who do they think they are, anyway?
(Oh, wait. That’s right. I am one.)
And I’m of the not-so-humble and categoric grandparent opinion that the rite of passage into grandparenthood does allow me to cross any line… invisible or otherwise.
Which brings me to this morning. Benjamin. And a bottle.
Audrey came to my house at around 7:00 am with Benjamin and Henry. Her other guys were with their dad, and she knew we could squeeze in some quality work time before 9 or 10:00. We did. At about 10:00, Henry needed a little nap, so Audrey put him in his pack-‘n-play while she attended to some important phone calls. That left me alone with Benjamin, and the first thing he wanted to do was open the kitchen drawer where I keep my spatulas and cooking spoons. Of course, we did. But way in the back of that drawer Benjamin spotted something. Something from his past. Something taboo, shall we say.
“Look, Grandma. A bottle,” he said, with wide eyes.
“Oh. A bottle,” I answered.
“And a nipple,” he correctly assessed.
“Ah. A nipple,” I agreed.
Then Benjamin looked at me with his big blue eyes and asked, “Can I have a bah-bah?” It nearly broke my heart that he called this thing a “bottle”… but the act of having one became “bah-bah.”
I melted into the oceans that are his eyes and said, “You know Mommy and Daddy would say ‘no’.”
“Pleeeassse, Grandma,” he whispered… like Mommy or Daddy would be bounding around the corner at any moment and end this fantasy.
I hesitated for a moment. And in that moment I remembered that Audrey and Matt had allowed Benjamin his bah-bahs until he turned 2 years old (in April) because he is only 14 months older than his little brother Henry… and Henry used bottles. A few weeks ago, Audrey and Matt “weaned” Benjamin to sippy cups. It wasn’t an easy transition.
But then I looked into Benjamin’s eyes again and I found myself saying, “Yes.”
‘Cuz I am a grandma. And I can say “yes” to “no” things. (I will admit that I felt a twinge of “oh,oh” but that didn’t stop me.)
I took the bottle, screwed in all the right pieces, filled it with milk, added the nipple and handed it to Benjamin. He said, “Thank you,” and immediately took it to my family room… and this is what I found:
Benjamin soon asked for more milk, and I accommodated this request, too. I had fallen deeply and hopelessly into those beautiful eyes.
When Audrey came into the room, she screeched to a halt at the sight of Benjamin sprawled across Pop-up’s chair with a bah-bah. “WHAT?” she asked.
I had but 3 words. “‘Cuz I can.”