Mom, Your going to be a grandma was not something I was particularly ready for. I mean I was maybe 45 and still had one daughter in high school! I don’t know if I ever would have been ready for grandchildren until it happened. I wasn’t one of those parents. I was ready for an empty nest after raising four children. I was so not ready that our middle daughter got married I had one request of the newlyweds. No grandchildren until we turned 50. The actually laughed at me! I was 44 maybe at the time? Six years wouldn’t have killed them to wait, right?
Of course they didn’t wait and they went on to have two bright, polite, full of personality little boys. They live two days drive from us so it is easy to put the Nana hat when I am with them. My husband and I do everything they want to do because they so rarely see us. The Nana hat comes off when we leave.
We now have a total of six grandchildren and I am finally over 50. It still isn’t all that easy, but these kids are amazing. The Nana hat stays on a lot longer now than it goes off. My son fell in love with a beautiful woman who had two girls by a previous relationship. These two girls are harder being a Nana with them then the other kids. They are so smart and precious, but they already have grandparents and great grandparents in their lives that love and adore them. I am never quite sure what the right thing is to do with them. I try to show them I love them, but am never sure they get that.
Our other two daughters have given us one boy and one girl. By the time these two were born we had adjusted to being grandparents.
I say adjusted because as much as people have said it is so easy to be grandparents it has not been for me. I was not ready at all. I still don’t quite see myself as Grandma. I chose Nana as my name, but everyone is Nana now days. I hear the name called out by a child and I look for one of my grandchildren. I found the French term for Grandma is Grandmere, I should have chosen that. The name isn’t a big deal. I can deal with that. The part I didn’t realize is how important to me these little people are to me. It amazes me how smart and wonderful they are. It makes me proud to see my kids being parents to their own children.
When our eldest decided to go back to school for her nursing degree there were no questions asked I was finding a way to watch the only toddler in my family that lives near me. I wish I could have done it with the rest of our grandchildren. Once I made that decision my mother told me how amazing it was for her to have watched our youngest while I worked for a year. She said that I would never regret this decision.
At first I think I did. I really overestimated how easy it was going to be. I had forgotten that a 13 month cries and wants held a lot. I forgot that you can throw getting anything accomplished with her here. It was a huge, huge adjustment to me. Now she is 22 months old and she giggles. She plays and today she found that she can open the drawer to my bathroom vanity drawer. Guess that door will stay closed. She is so funny she makes me laugh. She knows the names of animals, but insists on calling a cat, meow and a dog, woof woof. She christened Chris as Papa instead of Pap Pap.
Now I can’t wait to see her. I miss her on vacations. I find myself walking through stores and seeing clothing that I would love to get all six of the kids. Vacations are filled with finding that just right souvenir that chances are they just won’t care about. You what though? I am finding that I love being a grandmother and am actually proud to be one.
What I am finding out is that grandchildren are the bomb. They remind you that there is good in this world. They let you think that you are a hero. They make me want to work harder to make this world a better place.