In seems like yesterday that Olivia reluctantly gave each set of her grandparents a hug and kiss goodbye as we left the US and began our move to Portugal. Both grandmothers cried as Olivia decided she'd rather play than give an appropriate goodbye. How times have changed. How she's matured.
Yesterday afternoon, as I put Olivia down for a nap, she began to cry. When I asked her what was wrong, her reply was this:
Olivia: "Why can't grandma fly a plane here to see me?" (Speaking of Grandma McQuilton)
Mom: "Grandma told you why she can't come see you."
Olivia: "Yeah, but there are workers here. I want her to fly to my house and work here. I want her to stay here and babysit me when you're gone."
I really didn't know what to say. I gave her a hug and told her we would see grandma in a couple of months. Her reply, in a whiny, tearful voice, "No, I want to see her now."
Grandma and Grandpa McQuilton recently sent her a care package. A doll, books, etc. This sparked her memory and apparently, she realized that she misses them (she misses my parents too, however, they were recently here).
While we love our life of adventure and we love that we're currently stationed here in Portugal, it's moments like yesterday that remind me what a crazy life military families have (and many US families, in general, where moving away from family is so common). Here in Portugal, many of the grandmothers babysit their grand kids during the day. Moving away from family is uncommon. As we walk through parks, we are reminded of this.
Olivia doesn't grasp the life here. Recently, as we walked past a grandmother and grandchild, she said:
"Mom, that little boy's grandmother flew here on a plane to take him to the park!"
I just laughed. While she may now be beginning to understand emotions and feelings, she hasn't yet truly grasped the reality of things such as distance and time.