The Mountain Laurel
The Journal of Mountain Life

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from the
Heart of the Blue Ridge

The Granny

By Susan M. Thigpen © 1983-2012

Issue: November, 1983

Dear Grandchild, dear, dear little baby. I sit here holding you, in the same old rocking chair as I held your mother when she was your age. Don’t seem so long ago, just like yesterday, I was rocking her, now I’m rocking you. I was just like her; young and strong. She was my first baby, just like you are hers. Lawd, I remember the first time I held her. I didn’t hardly know what to do. Looking back, I had no idea what was ahead of me, no more’n she does now.

But I’ll tell you one thing, you’re going to like having a young mother. I was 19 when she was born just like she’s 19 now. Because she’s young, she’ll take time to play with you. She’ll swing on swings with you and enjoy it herself just as much as teaching you how. I remember one time when your Ma was a year old. We had just had a summer shower and I took her outside and taught her what fun mud puddles can be. We both got filthy, sure, but that’s what soap’s for. Folks didn’t get dirty, it would put soap companies right out of business! Your Ma will understand that and know dirt goes hand in hand with most anything that’s fun.

Sitting here looking at you, I envy her. I got memories, good ones, but that’s just what they are. She has it all to live through yet. I can’t help but wish I could do it all over again. Somehow time just gets away from you and you look back and wonder where it went.

Speaking of time, your Ma will be back to fetch you soon. At least I know one secret now I didn’t know 20 years ago. I am going to enjoy every minute I have with you and not take a single one for granted. I used to wish your Ma would say her first word, take her first step and so on. I’m not going to wish my time with you away, little baby. You’ll grow up fast enough anyway. Your granny’s going to stretch and enjoy every minute with you. I wonder that’s why people say we spoil grandbabies? If it is, you’re going to get more’n your share!