When my children were growing up, I never imagined that as adults they would live anywhere but here, in Iowa, where they were born and raised. And for a while, they did. Now only my daughter, Noelle, remains in Cedar Rapids, and I wouldn’t bet on that being permanent. Things have a way of changing….and not always in ways we can foresee. It has been career choices that have taken my two sons, Michael and Bryan, farther afield then I ever dreamed. Michael, a working artist, calls the Big Apple home, while his younger brother, Bryan, just relocated his family to New Jersey and is working in Philadelphia, as a tattoo artist. It’s hard not to see them often, and harder still since Bryan’s move also included my beloved granddaughter Ireland, who will be turning four in a few days.
Age has a way of giving us clarity and perspective, if we let it….and, in the end, what it all boils down to is family: parents, if you’re still lucky enough to have them living (I’ve been an orphan for a number of years now), sibilings (not always congenial), and one’s own children. Their spouses and partners, as they grow up, and, if you’re lucky, grandchildren. I will be seeing Ireland this coming Saturday, as she and her mother are in town for a few days. What an unexpected treat! Since it is so close to Ireland’s birthday, we will be celebrating it with a family gathering on Saturday evening. Good food, family, love and laughter–these are the finer things in life.