I have been “Honeybee” for two years now. Lyla had her second birthday on April fifth. She was born on Easter Sunday just as I was putting the turkey on a platter for Sunday dinner. The day was as pretty as any that has ever been, and my young dogwood bloomed that day for the first time.
Lyla is my only grandchild-and in some ways, I was as nervous when she was born, as when I had my own first child. I worried, I would “break her” and what made her cry, I wondered. I checked her breathing while she napped. What does a grandmother do, after all? Oh, how I hoped she would love me.
Jenny did everything right. She was a calm mother that played beautiful music for Lyla. Jenny had soft clothes for Lyla to sleep in, washed in natural potions. Jenny had all sorts of contraptions, cradles that rocked themselves and a machine that made sounds like rain and waves. Stars floated across the nursery ceiling while Lyla slept with the same soft bunny, that Princess Charlotte did . . .but Lyla was a fussy baby any way.
The one and only thing that was a guaranteed strategy, was to take Lyla outside. I declared that somehow Jenny had given birth to a former “woodland fairy”- and I have not given up on that notion now, two years later.
It gives me great pleasure to report that, Lyla is an especially loving child today. She still strongly prefers to be outside, but will cook in her little kitchen, from her Aunt B or look at books a good while. Lyla loves to draw and she loves to stack blocks. Lyla loves all animals and dolls. Her Aunt B, just gave her the sweetest little doll carriage-and Lyla loves that too. (Aunt B gives especially nice gifts.)
I became “Honeybee” because I said a little made-up rhyme , that made her laugh, when she was still a fussy baby. Honeybees do a lot of things. Mostly, I share with Lyla, things that I love. I do not worry about ABC’s and 123’s, but instead concentrate on sky and poetry, flowers and birds. I am learning all over again, how to make healthy cookies and soon, I will tell her stories about my own grandmothers, so she will know, that she came from a long succession of loving folks.
Lyla reminds me of so many precious things. Things known in the the earliest days of childhood-like whispering. I had forgotten how babies practice whispering . In a very hushed voice, they will chatter in baby language as if they are telling important and happy secrets. They examine sticks and leaves for long whiles. They never lie about their feelings, nor “put on airs”. Lyla had as soon find a dandelion, as a diamond, in the grass-so now, I look for dandelions, too. I am as liable to have a pretty rock in my pocket, as she is and I am now in the habit of waving at cats.
In some odd and beautiful way, grandparents and their grandchildren, are on common ground. A place where clocks have little purpose-where wealth is not measured in dollars and status is of no consequence. It is a place of authenticity yet, on a dime, can turn to something very far fetched from reality-for while we embrace truth-we are not fearful to dream-and dream big. There seems to be a sort of liberty, in childhood-and then again, in later years. It is really beautiful, when you think about it.
Dear Diary, I do not proclaim to know much, and only few things, am I sure of-but I do know with certainty. . . being a “honeybee”. . .is all it’s cracked up to be.