We knew already, if we were fortunate, that the grandparent relationship was special.
I knew it 18 years ago when my father-in-law (who sadly died eight years ago) cradled our newborn and spoke to him in a voice I’d never heard before. I knew it when my mother-in-law saw genius in the way our son drank water from his bottle.
I knew it from the way my mother pealed with laughter as she recounted instances of my children’s verve – and nerve – on their gallery and restaurant visits.
Since March, for their own safety, these women, tactile and adoring, have been carefully distant. There has been no hanging out with grandma. Rather, there has been stilted exchanges via video call and awkward waves from the end of the drive.
During lockdown, our youngest, 13, all