The setting is my 88-year-old grandmother's house. The curtains are drawn, the carpet is shaggy and the only noise is the rhythmic squeak of her walker. Grannie is walking laps around the small living room. Every half lap or so, she stops to draw in a couple deep breaths and gathers the strength to finish the lap. Her frame is frail and stooped. And following behind is her great granddaughter, my daughter Libby. Libby has been walking laps with Grannie for 6 weeks now. She has devoted her entire summer to move in and give much needed care to her great grandmother.
Part of that care involves the nightly rounds in the living room. Before they begin, Libby helps Grannie get up from her wheelchair and makes sure she's steady at her walker. Then she wheels over the oxygen tank and gently puts the oxygen tubes to her great grandmother's nose and carefully loops them around her ears. She sweetly let's her great grannie know that they're ready and before long, they're off. As they head into their first turn, Grannie lifts her head and smiles at me as she jokes,"this is our marathon."
Lap after lap, Grannie leads and, pulling the oxygen tank, Libby diligently follows, the two generations tethered by a tube. Grannie paves the way and Libby follows. They're going steady and they're connected.
Such is the circle of life. One generation leads and the other is to follow. The connection between them serves as a life line, just like the oxygen.
Lead Grannie, lead. And follow, Libby follow. The way has been paved for you. Run your marathon.