Sitting on babies

I am not sure whoever conjured up the term “babysitting” when referring to the act of watching over someone else’s little rugrat but anyone that has done much of it can tell you there is not much of any “sitting” that goes on during that job. Those little rascals sensing some long sought after freedom from mommy soon turn into little hellions bent on the destruction of property and nerves alike in a lot of cases.

Now while Ol’ Dutch has done his share of watching kids including his grandchildren and generally I can say it has been a mostly pleasant experience, anyone that must watch other strangers' kids for a living should be up for sainthood at the very least.

Early Sunday did bring about my attending church with the same grands and I got there early enough to sit at the coffee bar they provide as part of their fellowship. It is a nice addition to the experience as people can meet and greet each other before church and get enough coffee in themselves to sing robustly.

On this particular day Ol’ Dutch got to watching the families coming in the door. It was apparent to any observer that the mommies involved had expended every bit of strength they had for the week in getting their kids ready and going to church on time.

Finally arriving inside, they quickly proceeded to the babysitting rooms where they could drop off said munchkins and finally have about an hour and a half of peace for the week. Women would enter said rooms looking downtrodden, tired, and weary and exit smiling with a newness that can be likened to being born again.

A spring had come in their step and smiles graced every face, hugs were granted all around to friends and foes alike and even their husbands got a short grin from said moms. I have not seen happier people, even those just freed from years of prison.

My son has been lucky to have his wife stay home with the kids up to now, and I am thankful when people can do that. But that is not often the case in today’s world and moms everywhere work hard day and night to provide for their families.

But even stay at home moms need a break sometimes from their own brood as they are like out-of-town guests and laundry. Both seem to stink after about 3 days in too close proximity. And that is where Grandparents come in. If a person is fortunate enough to have parents who will watch your kids at least periodically, it is a godsend to be sure. Ol’ Dutch has been very blessed to be able to live close to my own grands 7 months out of the year and very early on their mother learned that I can be trusted with kids from age birth to death.

She quickly found out that once again, manicures, pedicures, grocery shopping, doctor’s appointments, lunch out and other things were available without having to take the kids along and then the ensuing amount of effort that it takes. She is the very best mom out there and Ol’ Dutch has gotten to be with the grands due to her kindness and graciousness. Some have said it is due to desperation on her part to have some “alone time,” but I like to look at it on the positive side and believe I am doing her a great service.

So, if you are one of the unfortunate ones that have had a falling out with the laws or in-laws, now may be the time to bury the hatchet-well not literally in their skull-but make peace and get yourself some free time. Or at least until such a time as the kids can watch themselves.

Kevin Kirkpatrick and his Yorkie, Cooper, fish, hunt, ATV, or hike daily. His email is [email protected]. Additional news can be found at