I have become more and more appreciative of my great grandparents, John and Mary Carey, after every sleepover of my own grandchildren. Little children are full of so much energy—far exceeding what Dad and I currently have.
Mary became a mother again at the age of fifty-five after her twenty-nine-year old daughter-in-law died. Grandma Mary and her fifty-six-year old husband had to care for their three and five-year old grandsons while their dad, Jim, went off to work at the local silk mill. Jim and his son moved in with his parents and brothers after his wife’s death. Life was so much harder during the early 1900’s, so a person in their mid-fifties was not as young physically as their counterparts today.
When our little cuties visit us for an extended stay, we are usually exhausted after their departure. Dad has trouble climbing into the fort and remaining inside in order to play a game of cards. “We need to play at the kitchen table,” he explains to them. While temperatures hovering in the mid-nineties with matching humidity are no excuse to stay inside for little people, our tolerance for playing outside in the Carolina sun in these conditions cannot match theirs.
We have become accustomed to binging on Handmaid’s Tale during the evening, but that did not happen during the latest sleepover. Two-year-old children (excuse me—2 ½ year old) think it is hysterical to jump on the bed while screaming at a high-pitched volume. This was not even amusing to her 5 ½ year old brother.
Thankfully, vanity took over and she decided to peruse the photograph album which contained pictures of her from her birth to shortly before her second birthday. (We really need to update those albums.) She then found a container of shells, which she played with until I announced it was time for bed.
Apparently, 10 o’clock was the preferred bedtime for our little visitor. I really appreciate what my grandparents did for their son, but wouldn’t any parent do this?