You stopped by unannounced this evening after dinner and bathtime. You were greeted by chubby legs in ballerina PJs and crooked pigtails. All 27 pounds of her were quickly thrust into your chest when she saw you. The genuine joy and love you have for each other was evident and mutual. 

You walked up a flight of stairs despite the pain I know it caused your bad knee. You sat on the floor and read book after book and placed block after block in between throwing a ball, stealing a kiss, and identifying an animal. 

You thanked me when I brought you up a plate of what we’d had for dinner. Microwaved hot dogs, potato chips, and Coke. You called it a gourmet meal and meant it because I put shredded cheese and onions on your hot dog instead of jus the basic mustard. You thanked me again when you were done and again when you left. 

You carried some stress in with you. You have obvious anxiety about things. I saw you staring at the pictures of my grandparents—your parents—that I have to keep on my fridge now in order to talk to them and see them every day. I know the torture it is for you that your mom can’t pop by anymore and see you, and it makes these nights all the more meaningful to me. 

When you knocked on my door, I got excited right along with my little girl. While I watched you throw your head back and laugh at her, I prayed for you. When I heard you telling her how you had the smartest granddaughter ever, I grinned. 

You became a grandma when I became a mom. The moment I had a daughter, you had a granddaughter. She hasn’t exempted you from facing death, fear, pain, and sadness, just like she hasn’t me. But nights like tonight remind me just how much she heals you, calms you, gives you hope, brings you joy. She does it for me every day. And the reason I believe that she can do it so easily for us is because we do it for her, too. 

The only thing better than having you as a mom is having you as a grandma. My girl is blessed beyond measure . . . and you are, too!

Abbie Dunlap

Abbie Dunlap writes about her personal experiences in hopes that others may be able to draw encouragement through reading about them. You can find her at