The blessing of children

It feels as if you were changing their diapers just a week or so ago and trying to sleep through the night. Before you knew what was happening, they were presenting you with grandchildren. Now, they’re helping you navigate your golden years. How swiftly flow the years. This morning, my dear bride Betsy and I met with our attorney to put our signatures on multiple documents that assigned power of attorney, both durable and health care, to our eldest daughter, who already had assumed responsibility for managing our family finances.

We also signed and initialed our wills, advance directives for natural death, along with those powers of attorney papers. Those advance directives call for serious, thoughtful decisions about the inevitable time when death appears imminent.

On our drive home from the attorney’s office, we can’t help but reflect on our precious years together as a couple and family of five and on what lies ahead in the time that remains. Every day, every moment matters, is so precious. Every child, now adult, wants to care for us and shower with love and acts of kindness.

When one arrives at this stage of life, how does the experience unfold for those who have no children, grandchildren or siblings? No family members to give advice, make calls, arrange and drive one to medical appointments, to monitor medications, to support, to feed, to bathe, to be there. Those who are blessed with friends turn to them, sheepishly, embarrassed to seek favors.

How blessed we are to have loving children and grandchildren, eager to provide care. How grateful.

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