Thursday, January 29, 2015
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Randall: Staying close from a distance as kids grow up

By
From page B5 | June 30, 2014 |

They grew up on opposite coasts, have never met and most likely never will.

But they share something in common (aside from the fact that they’re both 18, seriously good-looking and recently graduated from high school) that I hope they’ll remember.

It’s simple. They are much loved by an aunt and uncle who weren’t often present in their lives but delighted in watching them grow up from afar.

Jack lives in California. He is my husband’s sister’s boy. I met him when he was 4, after I started dating his uncle. We were sitting on the floor playing with Legos, Jack and I, when he suddenly stopped, looked in my eyes and asked straight-faced, “Is Uncle Mark your dad?”

I’ve had a soft spot in my heart for that boy ever since.

Kiowa lives in South Carolina. She’s my sister’s granddaughter, the child of a nephew I claim as one of my boys. Technically, I’m her great aunt, but in our family, we’re not big on technicalities.

I met Kiowa when she was 2, when I went “home,” as we say, to the Carolinas for a visit. My sister was so proud of her first grandchild she was fairly foaming at the mouth.

“Isn’t she beautiful? She looks just like me, don’t you think? And she’s so smart! And, oh, this is just the cutest thing: She says ‘beyew’ for ‘blue’!”

Minutes later, when my sister got up for more barbecue, Kiowa dropped the chicken leg she was gnawing on and gave me a nasty look: “I don’t say ‘beyew’ for ‘beyew!’” she said indignantly. “I say ‘beyew’ for beyew’!”

I’ve had a soft spot in my heart for that girl ever since.

My husband met Kiowa some years later when I took him back to the South before we were married to see if he could pass muster with my family. He passed and has been back several times, if not nearly often enough in their opinions.

He’s had very little real time with Kiowa, but feels as if he knows her, mostly because he listens – hanging on the words, laughing in all the right places – to the Kiowa stories I tell him.

Some of those stories I’ve collected like souvenirs while visiting my family. But most of them, I’ve heard from my sister when we talk on the phone. It’s surprising how close you can stay by talking long distance.

You know how grandmas talk: Kiowa did this, Kiowa said that, Kiowa is barrel racing again this weekend at the rodeo.

My husband collects similar stories about Jack, some on visits, but mostly from talking on the phone with Jack’s mom.

You know how moms talk: Jack did this, Jack said that, Jack’s got another water polo tournament this weekend.

My husband tells me the Jack stories and I hang on the words, laughing in all the right places.

And somehow, though I get to spend so little real time with Jack, I feel as if I know him.

Stories do that. They keep families and friends connected across miles and over years.

When we talk about the everyday, ordinary events in our lives, we build bridges that can span any distance. Those bridges allow us to bear each other’s burdens, pray for each other’s best, and share in each other’s hopes and dreams for ourselves and our children and our children’s children.

Our stories remind us that we are not alone, that we’re all on this strange road of life together, propping each other up and cheering each other on.

Jack figured out a long time ago that Uncle Mark is not my dad. And Kiowa, I assure you, always says “blue” for “blue.”

They are all grown up, strong and good and beautiful and shining, heading out on their own to make this sweet old world new once again.

They will forever hold a soft spot in our hearts and a for-sure place in our prayers.

And we’ll keep waiting to hear the next chapter of their stories.

Reach Sharon Randall at P.O. Box 777394, Henderson, NV 89077, or on her website: www.sharonrandall.com.

Sharon Randall

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

 
1st release for birds with mysterious goo a success

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A1, 1 Comment | Gallery

Vacaville police seek help to find sex offender

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A3, 3 Comments | Gallery

 
Sweep by sheriff’s team nets 4 arrests

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A3, 3 Comments

 
 
Travis starts work on Functional Fitness Center

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A3

 
Boy Scouts to screen award-winning film

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A3

 
Church makes ready for health, wellness fair

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

4-H Annual Presentation Day returns in February

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

 
Vacaville SWAT team serves search warrant

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A3

Real estate occupancy continues to climb

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A3, 1 Comment

 
 
Council backs beer, wine sales for Vacaville store

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A3

Suisun City police log: Jan. 27, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A10, 1 Comment

 
Fairfield police log: Jan. 27, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A10

.

US / World

 
Air Force probing alleged ‘treason’ remark by general

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1, 1 Comment | Gallery

Expect tiny tuxes but no real puppy love at doggy weddings

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2 | Gallery

 
Violations mount for toxic recycler

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

Quake rattles N. California coast

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

 
Second arrest in student stabbing

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4, 1 Comment

Large salmon release planned

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

 
Marshals track down missing treasure hunter

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

‘Drunk’ excuse falls flat in Vandy rape trial

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Attorney General nominee defends Obama immigration changes

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment | Gallery

Police seek law to alter Google app

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

 
Euro coast guards scramble to locate Syrian ghost ship

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

Chinese regulators go after online sale of fake goods

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
Investigation stems from police-involved shooting outbreak

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

Hezbollah missiles kill soldiers

By New York Times | From Page: A6

 
ISIS extends hostage deadline

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

Tape: Scientist offers to build nuke bomb targeting New York

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10 | Gallery

 
.

Opinion

A truly misinformed writer

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A7, 17 Comments

 
India now has 322 billion reasons to fix economy

By William Pesek | From Page: A7

Don’t brush off bullying

By Kelvin Wade | From Page: A7, 1 Comment

 
Editorial Cartoon: Jan. 29, 2015

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
Just be honest and come forward

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A7, 1 Comment

.

Living

Today in History: Jan. 29, 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Community Calendar: Jan. 29, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

Deadbeat boyfriend ruined my relationship with my granddaughter

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: A9

 
Horoscope Jan. 29, 2015

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: A9

.

Entertainment

Theater legend Joel Grey reveals that he is gay

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5, 2 Comments

 
Super Bowl advertisers aim not to offend

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

 
TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

.

Sports

Kings center DeMarcus Cousins hoping to make All-Star team

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Rodriguez wrestlers pull out 34-24 win over Wood

By Brian Arnold | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Solano men cruise past LMC for biggest win of season

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B2

NFL players who started young show more thinking problems

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
GM John Schneider has been architect of Seahawks’ success

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Patriots not dwelling on last Super Bowl loss in Arizona

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Woods returns to Phoenix with plenty of memories

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Tony Stewart acquires national sprint car series tour

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Korda, Lewis, Munoz tied for lead at LPGA season opener

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

Head of NCAA enforcement: Academic misconduct on rise

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Chicago Cubs’ Ernie Banks statue moved downtown for tribute

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

Kobe Bryant has surgery, expected to be out for 9 months

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
This date in sports history for Jan. 29, 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
.

Business

.

Obituaries

Joseph Phillip Raiff

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Dzhon Athanc

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

.

Comics

Get Fuzzy

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Sally Forth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

B.C.

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Beetle Bailey

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Frank and Ernest

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Garfield

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Dilbert

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Pickles

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Wizard of Id

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Peanuts

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

For Better or Worse

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Blondie

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Zits

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Rose is Rose

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Baby Blues

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Baldo

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Crossword

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

 
Bridge

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

Word Sleuth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

 
Cryptoquote

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

Sudoku

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9