by Linda Hoye
January 2, 2009
My daughter is sitting up in bed, smiling and crying at the same time. There is an indescribable glow about her
“Congratulations, Mommy!” I embrace her and kiss her forehead.
Satisfied that she is okay, I turn toward the baby warmer. The nurse is bustling about but steps aside to allow me to get closer to the warmer. My granddaughter, eyes wide open, is looking around as if to take in the sights of this new world she has arrived in.
I reach over and gently take her tiny hand in mine as I lean over and whisper so only she can hear. “Welcome! We’ve been waiting for you!”
Excerpted from, Two Hearts: An Adoptee’s Journey Through Grief to Gratitude by Linda Hoye, Benson Books, 2012
“I’m a big girl, Grandma,” she reminds me as I move to help her grate the carrots. Makiya is making wraps for the two of us for lunch–the same wraps I once made for her mommy not so many years ago. “I can do it.”
She can, of course, but maybe it’s the part of me that still gets misty when I remember the day she was born that causes me to forget that this strong-willed, intelligent, and beautiful girl is capable of preparing lunch for the two of us.
“Hang on, let me take a quick picture.” I reach for my phone and move toward the counter where she stands working.
“Grandma!” she’s exasperated with all the picture-taking around here over the past couple of days while she’s been spending a week with us.
“Just one,” I promise. “Look over here. Smile!”
Makiya turns toward me and instead of smiling, flashes a look that reminds me of her mommy. She allows the photo to be taken—with only a slight rolling of the eyes—and returns to the task at hand. Lunch.
When she’s grated the carrot as far down as she dare go, she sets the remaining chunk aside. Then, she opens the jar of Miracle Whip and spreads a thin layer on each of two tortilla shells, spreads the grated carrot on top, and covers it with alfalfa sprouts.
“Do you want me to help you roll it up?” I can’t resist asking as she pauses to consider her next move.
“I can do it, Grandma,” she reminds me, but after trying to roll them herself acquiesces and requests my assistance, then firmly directs me to return to my chair while she serves lunch.
She hands me a plate with the wrap in the middle and one of the Christmas sugar cookies we made the day before on the side, and a napkin.
“What would you like to drink?” she asks in her best server voice. “Water? Okay. Ice? Would you like crushed or cubed?”
She returns with a glass of water for me and eggnog for herself and sits opposite me. We munch on our wraps and chat; she brings the dolls seated beside her into the conversation making for an interesting time all around.
How I treasure these simple days with her.
January 2, 2017
Today is Makiya’s eighth birthday and even this grandma can’t deny that she is, indeed, a big girl. Happy Birthday, Ladybug Girl. Grandma loves you to the moon and back.
Linda Hoye is a writer, editor, adoptee, and a somewhat-fanatical grandma. Retired from a twenty-five-year corporate career , she lives in British Columbia, Canada with her husband and their doted-upon Yorkshire Terrier where she finds contentment in her kitchen, at her writing desk, behind her camera, in her garden, and most especially in her role as grandma.