There is already one special gift under my Christmas tree, and it will keep on giving for a long, long time!
Lily has been, up until the last few months, very shy around strangers, and Judy and I worked hard at not taking it personally. We knew it was just a small child’s way of dealing with unfamiliar people and surroundings.
However, over the last few months she has finally warmed up to Papaw and Momma Judy! Hopefully you can identify with the joy we both have been feeling over the small comments she’s started making, and the displays of affection she has progressively shown.
The first thing we remember is that one day while she and her parents were visiting in our home, Lily remarked that she wanted to stay! Corey started to put on her coat and said that she should give us a hug. Lily then said, “No, I want to stay!”
It was a little thing that probably went unnoticed by her mom and dad, but to us old folks it was a sign…a sign from above…the first sign that we meant something to her. It’s taken all of 3 years, but Papaw and Momma Judy are finally on her “A” list!
Judy and I took over the watch at 2PM last Tuesday. Tia had a doctor’s appointment, and put Lily down for her daily 1 to 3PM nap. We got there at about 2, so Tia could leave, but Lily could still be heard singing to herself in her room.
She has been put down, or in her room at 1PM every day since she was born. She has learned to stay in the room, whether she goes to sleep or not. She will not come out unless told she can, and usually falls to sleep within 30 minutes.
Tia told us that if she was still awake at 3PM, that we could go and get her.
Tia left and we sat there and listened to the monitor, not that we needed one to hear her. She was singing every song she knew, and when she wasn’t singing she was talking to herself. It was quite entertaining and funny at times.
Finally, just a few minutes before 3, I tiptoed back to where I could see her bedroom door. To my surprise the door was open, and all I could see were shoes and coloring books! For some reason she had lined all her shoes up across the floor in the opening of the door!
I went back into the living room and told Judy that I was going to let her come out. She agreed it was too late for her to be napping anyway.
She got very quite. I then repeated myself, but a little louder.
“Dat you Papaw?” she asked.
“Yes, it’s Papaw…come see me!”
She came running down the hallway to where I squatted with open arms. Instead of the bowed head and wrinkled brow upon seeing me, as we were accustomed to, she ran right into my arms and allowed me to hug her! It was so special, a moment that will be with me until my dying day. The perfect gift for an old man that will keep on giving!
We played, sang songs, and read books together, but mostly we did a lot of hugging!