My children have a hero, someone they believe can do anything, answer any question and generally save the day…sadly, my father agrees with them.
When Sam has an unanswerable question, which is often, I used to tell him to call Grandpa when my imagination got tired. Now, he just asks me the question then says, “Can I call Grandpa, I bet he knows.” I could let it hurt my feelings but instead I just hand him the phone and relax for a minute.
A sampling of questions that Sam has asked Grandpa recently:
- Where does the wind start?
- Does the sewer ever get full?
- How high is the sky and where does it start?
and my favorite that he asked him today…
- How can I make wind because I want to fly this little box kite I made from a Dots box. Can you make it windy?
The best part is that Grandpa usually answers without missing a beat, a feat I am in awe of. I have to hem and haw and generally tell Sam that I don’t know but that we can find the answer in a book or online. Not Grandpa, he spins a tale so quickly and with such conviction that you can’t help but believe him. Every once in a while Sam will wonder if Grandpa is just making things up but I think in his heart, he wants to believe that Grandpa has the answer.
Drew not only thinks that Grandpa can answer any question but that he can do anything. He convinced him to try to run from our house to the farm, about 4 miles. My dad has recently hurt his knee and his foot, has a horrible back, and honestly just isn’t in great shape anymore (sorry Dad!) but heaven forbid he say no to a grandchild so he, Sam, Drew & Gavin took off running. Well, that’s not quite true, let me give you some images.
Sam is a pretty runner, nice long strides and he’s fairly fast. Gavin is a strong runner but doesn’t think he is so he takes off and runs about 12 steps and then is tired and hurting and needs a drink and is hot and needs to get in the car. Drew runs like Phoebe from one of the best Friends episodes ever. His arms are all crazy, his legs aren’t going quite straight, and sometimes he throws a butt wiggle in. He typically joins Gavin on the hot/tired/need water train. Grandpa can still run like he used to, just not for very long. They made it to the end of our block and all clambered into the car. But according to Drew, Grandpa ran to the farm!
Drew also tried to convince Grandpa to do a flip on the trampoline a couple of weeks ago. Mom and I could see him contemplating it and both quickly said, “No, Drew, Grandpa can’t do a flip right now.” I think we hurt Dad’s feelings but I honestly didn’t want to spend the afternoon in the ER. Grandpa and Drew do a lot of hot tubbing and golfing together, lots of trips to the park and playing catch and Grandpa has convinced him that he can do anything because he truly believes he can.
Bridget, however, may give him a run for his money. She really likes Grandpa most of the time but also likes to point her little finger at him and remind him “No, no bumpa. Nama’s gaeul.” Translation: No, no Grandpa, I’m Grandma’s girl” She giggles hysterically after she tells him and runs to hide in Grandma’s arms, hoping that Grandpa is following to argue and tickle. She is usually rewarded. I don’t know if she is going to believe all the stories he tells or think he can do anything but for now she’s got him wrapped right around her little finger and they both seem pretty happy with the arrangement.
I remember thinking both my dad and my grandpa could do anything and answer any question and I guess I still do. I hope my kids will always hold on on to that belief, despite any evidence to the contrary, because everyone needs a hero and I’d rather have it be a lying Grandpa who loves them than anyone else!