We had a very special visit recently - your Nana, Papa and their pups came to stay with us for a whole week! Let the memory making and fun times begin!
Now, I've already told you about your Nana, but today I want to tell you a bit about the other half of the dynamic duo- Papa Bob.
The story begins (like most) on December 26, 2010, your birthday. As news reached our family that you were making your big debut...Nana and Papa jumped straight into their car and began their journey all the way from Michigan to meet you!
This was no easy feat for them - Nana just had back surgery a few days prior, and Papa had to navigate a wintery mix of horrible weather (NC alone just had an unexpected ice storm). But they were determined.
Arriving at the hospital safely (thank goodness) well beyond visiting hours, dad begged the nurse to let them in. Thankfully I was spared excessive pleading and she happily obliged escorting them through.
It was then that I was able to witness a grandfather not only hold his granddaughter for the first time, but the look of what was to become a life long friendship through an unknown journey ahead.
Let me tell you a little about this incredible man we call Papa.
In addition to his striking resemblance to the ever so handsome Ringo Starr, he's loving, kind, hardworking, and funny. The type of man who takes note of what one likes and will go to the end of the earth to find it for you. He would give a kidney (and has) to someone in need, because it's not often in life you can do such a thing, but be somewhat uncomfortable by the praise associated with it. To him it was just knowing it was the right thing to do.
In fact after we shared news of your autism with our family, he wasted no time in visiting the local bookstore to find books on Autism Spectrum Disorders. Keep in mind Papa still works very long hours, but would come home, eat dinner, then get to quietly reading his book. All in an effort just to get to know you and your world a little better.
And that he did.
I remember (maybe 2 years ago now) when we were visiting Michigan, you found comfort in sleeping next to him, holding his hand on their couch.
Cutest thing ever Addie. Seriously one of those "awe" moments. Except every time he'd snore, it quickly turned into a "yikes" moment when you'd wake up and yell at him so he was aware of your displeasure in him for making noise. He'd calmly readjust his pillow and back to sleep you'd go. Awwww...
He waits patiently for your engagement and is calm when you are having moments of distress. When you struggle to find your words, you'll take his hand to guide the way. Where he's more than happy to drop whatever it is he's doing to follow your lead every time.
Perhaps it's to be pushed on the swing, to sneak you ice cream all while taking pride in each "J hook" you successfully perform with your spoon - the OT would be proud! (side note: it's a close call who loves ice cream more you, Papa, or Gabe). Or just to have him sit near you to watch you line up your toys. Let's also not forget how quick he is to point out all the amazing things you do! Even bragging about your amazingness (and Clara and Gabe's) to others ;)
You seem to welcome him without hesitation into your world and he's quite happy to be there.
So Papa was here Addie, and it's always a pleasure to see the two of you together. That look I saw on the day you were born has indeed blossomed into a beautiful friendship.
He loves you just the way you are and is very proud of the little girl are growing up to be.