It still happens. People still say things to me about how wonderful it is to have their grandchildren
(a) in town
(b) right next door
(c) in the next zip code
and I walk right into it.
Me: (walking to shul, a friend has fallen into step):
Good Shabbas! How are you?! How's your new ainickle* doing?
B"H** I'm SO happy. He's just edible. It's so wonderful, I can't even begin to tell you. And they live around the block for me! Practically next door. I can drop in whenever I want. She drops him off whenever she wants.
And he's so Cute. I could hold him and squeeze him all day. How are yours in uh, where are they, exactly?
Me: (Stepping up the stride) Hey, have a great Shabbas. Enjoy your grandchildren.
Look. I deserve this. For years I lived apart from my own mother, my own family. I had no support. I deserve this.
Me: Oh, for sure. You do. You do. Nobody's arguing. It's all good. Have a great Shabbas.
And we step into shul.
* ainickle rhymes with gain-pickle, means grandchild
**B"H is an abbreviation for the Hebrew, Baruch HaShem, that translates to, Thanks to The Name, or to G-d. B"H is a gratitude made popular to Jews, who now preface every sentence with this, by the father-in-law of Moses, Yitro, a Midianite priest, proof positive that we learn from all people, or should.