In my life, I’ve prayed many prayers. I’ve prayed for guidance, health, wisdom, healing, and peace. I’ve prayed for answers to tough questions and for forgiveness. And, since they were born, I’ve prayed that my children would be fortunate enough to spend time and make memories with their 102 year old, Great-Great-Grandmother.
Let me tell you how great our God is:
When I announce that we’re going to visit Kitty Grandma, my children jump up + down and squeal. They run to find a bag to pack with snacks to share with her, they choose a toy to show her, or they color her a picture.
During our drive to her nursing home, they ponder where she is, what she’s doing, and tell me how excited they are to spend time with their Kitty Grandma.
The love they have for her is something I can’t explain, but also something I understand thoroughly…
…because I feel the same exact way.
Despite my understanding of their feelings toward her, seeing their excitement made me curious.
What was it about visiting a building, full of the elderly, that makes my four and two-year-old daughters so excited?
I’m in my thirties. I fully comprehend how special having a Great-Great-Grandmother is for them, while they don’t.
I’ve shared countless hours of deep and meaningful conversations with Kitty Grandma, and they’ve just shared Glutino pretzels, granola bars, dance moves, and some toys.
How could they be so excited to see her, not understanding how truly special their time there is?
The answer is:
My children associate their Great-Great-Grandmother with the single most important emotion.
The simplicity of this was embarrassingly obvious once I connected the dots, because I’ve associated her with that emotion for as long as I can remember. I realized that my initial confusion with their glee was rooted in disappointment. Although my prayers were simple: time and memories with her, I realized I wanted much more for my children than that.
I wanted them to know their Great-Great-Grandmother as personally as I do; to know the ways she impacted lives of children when she worked for CPS; the way she has carried traditions down through multiple generations; her zeal for life and all it had to offer.
The truth is, they won’t ever get to experience her the exact way I did, but they got to experience her heart. And ultimately, that’s what matters. Her heart and her love for all things is what makes her who she is, which leaves me with no reason to feel disappointed.
Since being home and witnessing all of these special moments between my children and their Great-Great-Grandmother, my prayers have turned into praise.
To be able to witness these moments between them, to see how much they love each other… there truly aren’t words for what that does to my heart.
I never cease to be amazed when I remember that there’s A CENTURY between my youngest and Kitty Grandma. While that’s incredible, the true amazement comes when I remember that these ladies, that I love so dearly, are in completely different stages in their lives, but are united by one single thing:
These photographs are of my kids with their Great-Great-Grandmother are heartwarming whether you’re me, my husband, my kids, my Great-Grandmother, or someone I don’t know who happens to be reading this. Why?
Because of the love that’s thriving in each and every moment photographed. You can feel it, and it triggers something inside of you.
But that feeling you have in your heart when you see them doesn’t have to be the end. Nor should it be.
Love is everything.
Writing and photography from Amanda Armsey
About Amanda Armsey: I’m Amanda, an ordinary lady, wife, and mom of two that has a passion for photographing love in its best form: the #realreel. Born and raised in metro Detroit, I followed my husband around the globe during his career in the Air Force, but we recently returned to the Mitten State to settle down. Photography became a hobby of mine in 2007 during my study abroad experience in Argentina. I started my business about six years later when we moved to Germany. When I became a mother, everything changed. My children taught me to look at life in an entirely different way than I ever did before. I’ve made it my mission to authentically document all types of love; to tell the story of the light that is in your life; to share with the world the heart-filled chapter you’re currently living out; and to, by doing this, put more love out into our world.