My family received long-awaited news this afternoon: after months of prodding, my aging grandparents have finally decided to move to Montana. My grandfather is suffering from Alzheimer’s and my grandmother is nearly blind–not a good combination. So my initial reaction upon hearing the news was relief and a sense of victory. What can I say? I can turn anything into a competition, even the town in which my grandparents live.
And then I realized that their move here would bring more than just peace of mind knowing they were being cared for. It would also result in three generations of my family living in the same town, something that hasn’t happened in precisely two decades.
We moved to Idaho from Arizona when I was seven years old. My dad’s parents spent every summer with us in Idaho, so I’ve remained very close to them. I know all their stories about growing up, and could always count on my Nana to make me a coconut cream pie whenever I had a craving. My mom’s parents rarely came to visit, on the other hand. Not because they didn’t want to, they just weren’t in the same financial situation that allowed my paternal grandparents to travel so much. So we would see them once a year when we made the drive or flight to southern Arizona for spring break. Over the years, and as I grew up, I visited less and less frequently. A long weekend every two years or so.
But in just a few short weeks, all that will change. I’ll get the opportunity to make up for lost time with them. I can’t wait to sit down with my grandmother and hear how she and her sisters would sneak out to go dancing. I can’t wait to hear my grandfather’s stories about being in WWII.
I’m grateful for the chance to know my own history a little better, and grateful that I’ll get to make up for lost time.