Grandparents.


Grandparents.

I have very few memories with mine, but I also have memories with people who stepped up when my were unable to or were gone.

Brian has tons of memories of his grandparents and he relives them everyday.

Often when coming to a hard decision we think of what advice they would give or when we accomplish something we wish we could share the news with them.

Moving to Maine had one draw back for me–leaving grandparents (and aunt) . They were a safety for me in the madness of raising children and they provided in countless ways for my girls. So I wanted to do a tribute to them because they are still on my mind and this Jewish guilt thing is heavy. Each set is unique and offers something valuable to the girls. As you read through them think of your own grandparents or your children’s’ grandparents and how the impact they have.

Grandma and Grandpa: You instill practicality in the girls. Baking, sewing, camping, and family gatherings. A place to go when Mama needed a break, a coffee, or an appointment. You depart a down to earth sense where respect for people is taught above all else and how to help others without grandstanding. One look from grandma and Amelia is frozen in her tracks, but she knows that love comes after the teaching. In many ways you are the yin to my yang…a balance the girls need.

Bubbe and Zayde: You bring too many gifts. You spoil the girls, clutter our house and are always trying to feed them. However, the clutter is not just in the chatkes but also in the unconditional love you provide. You didn’t have to give it at first, but there was never a moment of hesitation with the love you provided for both these girls. They can do no wrong, and that love and confidence is helping them to face the world with confidence in themselves. I thank you for always supporting my wishes with the girls, they know they may not be able to run to you to get their way but they know they will always get your support. Despite the distance, you still make every event and milestone in their lives. Amelia knows that when she looks into the crowd she will see you and it is a comfort like no other. You chose love and are teaching that love and acceptance to the girls….thank you.

Gummy and Pop Pop: The current relationship we now have is a testament to your strength and character. A lesson to both my girls to move out of our comfort zones and to find the truth among the ramblings in our ears. It was always easy to accept Amelia, but it wasn’t to accept the rest of us. What started this post was a picture I was looking at of Nezzie wearing the dress you bought her from Alaska; you thought of Nezzie while on a trip of your own release. It was an action (among many other ones) that helps Amelia see that we are all a family with no separation and bridges– a gap she needed closed to help her feel more whole. You teach Amelia about her family history, about wood, and all the other things from the vast amount knowledge you both hold but I think the most important lesson is the one you teach with that dress. That what unites people in the end is love, but sometimes we struggle and get hurt in the process. It is not always a smooth path in life, but that does not mean we live without joy and happiness. You help Amelia to explore and discover and expose her to new things. You always put your grandchildren first and make them feel like they are the world, and as a result they are ready to face the world with a base of love. Without you Amelia’s current life would not be possible…thank you for extending our family.

To all grandparents: Amelia, Nezzie, Brian and I miss you all everyday. Thank you for everything you have done, and continue to do, for us. The impact you have had is more than I could have written here.

Leah

Leah is Director of Education for Congregation Beth Israel in Bangor, Maine. She's a special educator, former school director for Manheim Central School District in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, and mother to Amelia and Nezzie. She's usually tolerant of her husband, Brian.

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About Brian

Brian Kresge

Brian Kresge

Writer, soldier, programmer, father, musician, Heeb, living in the woods of Down East Maine with three ladies and a dog.

About Leah

Leah Kresge

Leah Kresge

Director of Education for Congregation Beth Israel in Bangor, Maine, special educator and former school board member, mother to Amelia and Nezzie.

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