The below slice is one I captured in my notebook a month ago. It was a special bonding moment. Moments ago, we just returned from the hospital where my father-in-law is. He is awaiting a pace maker on Monday. My kids cherish their grandpa, even when he is gruff around the edges.My eyes look into our living room as my ears are listening intently. It’s not the image I want to retain, but the conversation. Wisdom is being passed down from one generation to the next. These are the moments that make hosting my father-in-law special to our family; he has been living with us for five years.
Dad G may be a little wobbly with a sore back, diabetes and missing toes, but his mind is a wealth of knowledge. My husband often asks his father for advice on topics connected with electricity or maintenance (or cars, economics, remodeling, history, etc). Dad G’s words are a transfer of wisdom.
Today, my husband is talking with his father as our youngest looks on. Each are sharing their opinions and thoughts regarding a favorite topic of interest – guns. I’m not even sure of how the conversation started, but I quickly retrieved my notebook to capture the moment.
Dad G was an avid hunter as a teenager and knows specialty guns. He also served in the Korean War. My husband was talking about one type of gun and its uses, and Dad G would connect that gun to an experience he had. Our youngest was mesmerized. He sat and listened intently, asking questions for a thirst of knowledge. He would nod and interject complimentary comments throughout this discussion. Sixty-seven years span between our son and his grandfather, but at this moment, the eighty year old and thirteen year old are connected. His grandfatherly stories and knowledge are being transferred to his son and grandson, cherishing the moment for years to come.
Even before I’m done typing, the three males have gone to other tasks. They may not hold this discussion as monumental, but I see the lasting benefits. It is these moments, these conversations, these generational transfers that enrich and shape our lives forever.