Years ago there was a country song written by Ronnie Milsap called what a difference you have made in my life. It was a song he wrote as a tribute to his wife but I have borrowed some of his words to try to convey what a difference Carter and Griffin have made in my life.
What a difference you've made in my life,
You're my sunshine day and night,
Oh what a difference you've made in my life.
What a change you have made in my heart,
Oh what a change you've made in my heart.
You have gave love a new meaning,
So I joined in the singing,
That's why I wanna spread the news.
As most of you who read my BLOG know I don't have any biological grand children. Martha and Jimmy got Jessica when she was 6 1/2 or 7 and when I met Joan Christopher was about 3 years old. Children at that age know you are not really their grand father and so they never called me grandpa and I guess I never really felt like one.
I would tell my family and friends who were grand parents it didn't really bother me. I would say things like I don't have patience with kids any way so I probably wouldn't be a good grandpa any way but deep down I was envious of them.
Well lo and behold on February 1. 2005 Carter was born. I was there about a half hour after his birth and the very first time I held him I felt like a grand father. I told his family I didn't want to be called Grandpa though, I wanted to be called Papa, so I became Papa to a little guy who made a drastic change in my life. Lucky for me we just bonded from the very beginning and have continued a great relationship. We have had great times together, going to the park, McDonald's, playing baseball, soccer and games together and he loves for me to read to him. He has also went to work with me on my part time job a lot. He started going with me when he first started walking, I had to take diapers with me back then and change him, that's how long he has been going with me. If he doesn't go with me for awhile every one starts asking me when is Carter coming. LOL
One time a lot of the family were meeting at the Cheesecake Factory for dinner, I was outside waiting for Carter to come with his Mom and Dad, I was on one side of the street and he was on the other, when the traffic cleared he pulled loose from his Mommy and came running across the street yelling Papa, Papa, and jumped into my arms, with tears running down my cheek I looked up and said I now know for sure there is a God. LOL That also assured me that I was a Papa for sure.
Now I am even more lucky, Griffin and I seem to be bonding quite well also. I have been going to the fitness center since May trying to get in shape to keep up with them. LOL
A group of us at work one day were talking about the movie, The Bucket List. Some one said Joe do you have a bucket list. A list of things you want to do before you die. I said I have been so lucky in my life, great family, great friends, traveled a lot, seen a lot, done a lot so my Bucket List is not very long. I said I just want to live long enough to make enough of an impression on Carter and Griffin that when they get old enough to realize I was not their biologial Papa that it won't make any difference to them. And if I am lucky enough to get to Heaven and one day I am looking down and some one asks them about their Papa that they will say my Papa was a cool guy, that would make my Bucket list complete.