I have on my phone now a new background picture, a beautiful young lady named Sophia Odette.
Newly minted into this world on 10/11/12 she is daughter to my son Erik and his wife Solana. That would make me a grandpa. In the Midwest we actually say "grampa." And more specifically, in our family that would make me Grampa G. Since there are commonly two grampas in a family, we shortcut the differentiation by using the first letter of the last name, hence Grampa G for German.
I am the third Grampa G that I know personally, and am exceedingly proud to carry on the name. I received the news Thursday last via text, very "au courant" for a grampa, I might point out. The text did bring Sophia in at 9 pounds 7 ounces… to which text I received a quick follow-up call when I texted a response about being born full grown. Erik corrected the birth weight to 7 pounds 9 ounces, attributing the numeric error to three days of sleep deprivation. Fair enough.
All that to the conversation we had, Erik and I, when on Sunday he and Solana and Sophia were quietly resting at home. Erik on the couch, Sophia on his lap. Dad and daughter, Solana resting. Erik speaking of the wonder of the life in his lap. Hearing in his voice the heartbeat of that wonder.
How I could relate, how I too wondered at the life, when he rested in my lap.
And the miles between. My mistakes, the things I might have done, the things I did well. The miles. And here, he now the father, I a thousand miles away seeing again through his eyes, new life. Her tiny fingers curled around his thumb. Her tiny arm arcing through random motions. Her eyes, searching, full and round.
Erik and Solana have chosen to believe in the future.
In this season, in a viscous atmosphere thick with dissembling and mischaracterizations, with wars and rumors of wars, they have chose the better path, to set spinning into that future a new life. Choosing to believe in opposition to the pestilence oozing from the Super PACs and the talking heads. Choosing to believe in yes, the future is bright with promise.
Welcome to the world Sophia. You have been planted well, to parents full of life and adventure and curiosity. Happy birthday!