I was a father once. Well I am still a father technically but my children are adults and I am talking about the kind of parenting one does when the children are not adults.
My granddaughters stayed with us about a week. And one day while grandma was on the phone I was asked "Can we go for a walk?"
I was stunned.
First thing I had to do was process what had just happened. Someone -- another human being -- had just asked my permission to do something. What? Suddenly I recalled that my reality had changed and there were now these people living here and I was in some kind of loco parentis role. Wow! I hadn't thought about that.
And I had been asked permission to do something mundane -- take a walk. I realized in that instant just how long it had been since I had been a real parent.
That made me recall just how many decisions and choices that parents have to make when it comes to their children. Amazing really. What an awesome responsibility to raise children.