Three years ago yesterday, I met Luca Joseph Saitta, my youngest grandson, for the first time. He was, as were his siblings, and his mother and her siblings, a perfect child. I am biased…of course. That’s what parenthood, and grandparenthood is all about. It’s about instant, unconditional love. For all the years to come…for each child…each grandchild…its a commitment to love them forever. No matter what. Its what we signed up for.
That’s why I felt bad yesterday that our household was stricken by the flu and we missed celebrating Luca’s birthday in person. But, at the same time, I know each milestone is marked — whether we are physically present or not. Every birthday, every Christmas, every concert, play, graduation, marriage, or birth. They are all noted, observed and cherished.
We have photos that record the passage of the years. We have home movies that make us laugh — and cringe — at who were and how we changed and grew. Movies that captured adventures in the far corners of the world, that chronicled the growth of our children and now our grandchildren. And, even without photos, we only have to look around us. There’s the infant who’s now a toddler. Toddlers who are in elementary school. And children who are grown, living lives of their own.
It would have been great to share the day with Luca yesterday, but we were with him in spirit, as we are with all our children every day. They’re stuck with us. That’s the flip side of unconditional love. So far, it’s worked pretty well for us. I hope it always will.